Wendy's is on its way to building a new restaurant on South State Street in Westerville.

Wendy's is on its way to building a new restaurant on South State Street in Westerville.

The Westerville Planning Commission voted 6-0 last week in favor of plans to replace the existing restaurant at 599 S. State St.

The new building, which will be constructed later this year, will be brick and stone with two towers on the corners closest to State Street — nearly identical to plans created by a consultant working for the city of Westerville.

The Wendy's plans brought forward at the beginning of the meeting were similar, but not quite what the commission was looking for, but company spokesman George Schweitzer said Wendy's was willing to compromise.

"As far as the architecture goes, we're willing to work on that at a staff level for final approval," Schweitzer said. "It is our third time back (before the planning commission). We think we've done the best we can do."

The commission previously rejected plans from Wendy's based on the traffic flow around the building, which would have forced cars from the drive-through lane and the parking lot to merge with cars turning off State Street.

But the new plans presented June 23 call for widening the merge lane from 13 feet to 20 feet. This convinced planning commission members that the new traffic pattern is workable.

"This is a tremendous, vast improvement," said commission member Paul Johnson. "The current site, as everyone has said and as you've said, has its own inherent dangers É I do believe that your site plan is probably the best you can have."

Dan Wetherby, vice president of engineering for Wendy's, said plans are in place for the old building to be demolished and the new restaurant to be constructed in time for a 2011 opening.

In other business, the planning commission directed the owner of the Burger King at 99 W. Schrock Road to repaint the roof.

Franchise owner Bill Kirstetter said he took initiative to repaint the building and the roof in December 2009 in order to update its look in keeping with the recent remodeling of the rest of Westerville Plaza. What Kirstetter didn't realize was that repainting the building required a variance from the planning commission.

City staff and commission members agreed that the tan color of the building itself is acceptable, but the newly painted blue roof and the red band across the top of the building aren't in keeping with the standards for that area.

"We felt the paint job on the walls was actually a pretty good choice," city planning administrator Rich Kight said. "(But) the blue roof isn't reflective of anything other than Burger King's corporate colors É We're recommending a dark bronze."

The commission — and eventually Kirstetter — agreed with the staff's suggestion for a bronze roof and band.