October 6, 2005

Press, 10/5: Wendy's expected to drop plan for athletic club site

What's this? Wendy's thinking about backing out of building on the Edens Athletic Club location? Go figure.

Wendy's expected to drop plan for athletic club site
by Brian Nadig
October 5, 2005

Alderman Patrick Levar (45th) said this week that an attorney for the Wendy's restaurant chain has informed him that the company plans to drop its plans to open a restaurant on the site of the recently closed Edens Athletic Club, 5130 N. Cicero Ave. Wendy's expected to drop plan for athletic club site

The attorney said that the company will withdraw its request for a special use for the site at the Oct. 21 meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals, according to Levar, who said that his office has not received written confirmation from Wendy's. One of the factors that reportedly could affect the chain's decision is whether it can get out of a long-term lease that it has on the property.

More than 300 people have signed a petition opposing the plan to open a Wendy's on the site, and several residents living near the site have attempted to get the health club to reopen. The property is zoned for a restaurant, but a special use is required for a drive-through window. October 5, 2005

"I urged Wendy's to find a more appropriate location, possibly in the 45th Ward," Levar said. "My main concern will be whether there will be someone who will be able to step forward and operate and lease the health club." Levar said that the proximity of homes and congested traffic on Cicero make the site a poor choice for a drive-through restaurant.

Officials with the Tennis Corporation of America have said that the 30-year-old club had not been profitable over the past decade and that it was not large enough to compete with newer facilities in the area. A group of members failed in an attempt to buy the club.

About 2 years ago the CVS Pharmacy chain considered building a store on the site, but was unable to obtain the additional properties which it needed.

Resident Wesley Zameda said that while he welcomes the news that Wendy's may withdraw its plans, the uncertainty over the site's future will continue to be a concern for the community until the club reopens or an appropriate alternative is found.

Source: Nadig Newspapers

Posted by Tannerman at 9:23 AM | Comments (0) | Trackback