At its Sept. 24 meeting, the Noblesville Common Council gave final approval for a request from Chick-fil-A to build two outdoor canopies over its drive-thru lanes.
Store operator Sam Hartman recently has been petitioning with the city to build the structures at his restaurant at 14098 Bergen Blvd., off Exit 210 near Hamilton Town Center in the Saxony Corporate Campus.
The amendment to the original development plan was approved 7-2, with Councilors Darren Peterson and Rick Taylor voting against the request.
Before voting, Taylor voiced concerns over the precedent that an approval would set.
“My concerns are that we’re going to have other (restaurant owners) come in front of us to do the same thing,” Taylor said. “Let’s not forget we have another Chick-fil-A in town, and they have the same issue there as they do out at Exit 210.”
Noblesville Planning Director Sarah Reed said the sites for the restaurants at Bergen Boulevard and at 16685 Mercantile Blvd., just off Ind. 37, significantly vary.
“We review each site specifically for its own unique elements,” Reed said. “(The other Chick-fil-A) site is way more packed than this particular one. I know that this sets a precedent, but we review each site individually before we make a favorable or unfavorable recommendation.”
Councilor Darren Peterson said his while he believes the petitioners have worked hard to make the canopies look more appealing for the site, his concerns are over the safety of the employees working outdoor in the drive-thru area.
Store operator Sam Hartman said employees will continue to work outside and that he believes they will be safer if the canopies are constructed.
“We’ve had people outside taking orders and expediting food through the pass-thru window for years now without these canopies,” Hartman said. “So, the addition of the canopies would actually allow us to be safer, not only from a weather standpoint, but from a light standpoint. The canopies have the lighting included in them. It will be an opportunity for my team to be able to be safer from cars and weather.”