McDonald’s to raze, rebuild Ridge Road store in Hobart
By Karen Caffarini Post-Tribune correspondent July 12, 2013 4:04PM
Updated: September 12, 2013 2:42AM
HOBART — Owners of the McDonald’s restaurant at Ridge Road and Indiana 51 expect to demolish the 35-year-old building next spring and replace it with a new, modern structure now that traffic and other issues have been addressed.
The Board of Zoning Appeals and Plan Commission approved a number of requests from McDonald’s Real Estate Co. and owner, the Modrak Operating Group, regarding the changes.
BZA action will allow for two existing curb cuts to measure 37-feet each, exceeding the maximum 20-foot curb cut width allowed by the city, and to add a third curb cut on State Road 51.
The commission approved the site plan and gave a favorable recommendation for an off-site multi-user pylon sign on Indiana 51.
“This has been a long, on-going process. There was a long-existing situation where we needed to do some housekeeping. This will be an extremely modern enterprise conducive to the area,” commission chairman John Brezik said.
Resident Gary France said traffic in that area is bad enough now; having three cars pull out at the same time could make the situation more dangerous. But city officials said this is a safer alternative.
“The site plan committee went over the third curb cut on Indiana 51. We see it as a better in and out approach,” Interim City Planner Carroll Lewis said. “This is the best solution we could come up with.”
Attorney David Austgen, representing the owners, said the new 5,200-square-foot building will replace the current 4,500-square-foot structure and will be built on an expanded site.
In other matters, the BZA approved a sign for C&B Optical at 1601 E. 80th, to be located at the west side of the building.
A representative of Gary Sign Co. said it would face Mississippi Street, which is much busier today than when the optical company first came in for a sign. Commission members noted this is the third request for the same Merrillville Plaza building.
Also, Cynthia Rongers received permission to build an addition to her existing house that encroaches four-feet beyond the 30-foot front yard building line.