Wendy's will get to pair its improved headquarters with a flagship restaurant.
Dublin City Council members this week approved the rezoning of 1.35 acres on the southwest corner of Dale Drive and W. Dublin Granville Road to allow Wendy's to build a 3,800-square-foot restaurant.
When complete, the restaurant will sit at the entry of the Shoppes at River Ridge, behind the current Wendy's at the southeast corner of Riverside Drive and W. Dublin Granville Road.
The restaurant will also sit across the street from the Wendy's world headquarters and "complement the more than $17 million in renovations underway on our current campus, including the construction of a new 75,000 square-foot-facility," information from the company said.
"This restaurant, built with an all-new design, will become the flagship of our worldwide system," the zoning request from Wendy's states.
"We want to showcase our tremendous pride in returning to our Dublin home. It will be a beacon, a special destination for all company employees and franchisees who visit our headquarters."
The restaurant will host meetings and have a community room with artifacts and mementos from Wendy's history.
Dennis Hill, Wendy's vice president of real estate, said the company hopes to break ground in the spring.
"We hope to be open in June or July," he said.
As for the current restaurant, Hill said, the city has expressed interest in acquiring the property.
Dublin plans to improve the intersection of Riverside Drive and W. Dublin Granville Road in the future.
Although the rezoning of the property from Bridge Street corridor commercial district to community commercial district was unanimously approved by council members, some did express concern at setting a precedent and future development of the land.
City Attorney Steve Smith told council members a development agreement has been signed by the company that only allows a Wendy's restaurant on the land. Any other building would have to go through the planning and zoning process, he said.
"We spent a lot of time and money on the Bridge Street corridor," Councilman Richard Gerber said, citing concerns that rezoning from the Bridge Street corridor zoning would become the norm.
"When I voted for (the Bridge Street corridor) I didn't realize they could forego Bridge Street corridor zoning and (planned unit development) and go to straight zoning."
Steve Langworthy, Dublin's director of land-use and long-range planning, said landowners could request rezoning from the Bridge Street corridor, but the change would have to be approved by Dublin City Council.
"We spent an awful lot of money on this Bridge Street corridor and I think it's a slippery slope," Gerber said.