Jimmy John’s set to build drive-through downtown

jimmy johnsThe City Plan Commission on Tuesday gave approval for  Jimmy John’s to build a controversial drive-through deli downtown.

But the commission also approved a code change that requires all future downtown drive-through restaurants to get approval of development plans.

That does not apply retroactively, and Jimmy John’s went by the current city procedures.

“I don’t think we should punish someone who followed all the rules,” said Commission chair Babette Macy.

Opponents argued that the deli to go in at 923 Broadway was inappropriate in a historic district and would cause traffic problems.

Co-owner Mark Abbott said, “We’re not even open during morning rush hour and we’re very slow during evening rush hour.”

He said the drive-in feature was needed for the restaurant to make a profit because of the high cost of the property.

“We took on the risk there with the understanding there would be a drive-through,” he said. ‘We’re in a specific zoning that allows us to do what we want to do.”

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