Construction of new McDonald’s has ceased

By Taylor Rinehart, Staff Writer — The construction of McDonald’s on Market Ave. has ceased after Judge Kristin Farmer ruled, in April, that the construction could not begin, and upheld her ruling in court on July 31, after Oliveri Contracting broke ground on the foundation. The lot now sits idle on the corner of Market Ave. and Grove St. because of the strong opposition to the construction from the surrounding neighborhood. Arguments against the construction include an increase in litter, increased traffic, and noise. Sophomore Kaitlyn Wertz lives in the neighborhood behind the McDonald’s lot.

“There is already a McDonald’s right down the street.” Wertz said. “They could build something less common than a McDonald’s.”

The Grove St. neighborhood hired a lawyer, John Juergensen, to represent their opposition. At a Plain Township Board of Zoning Appeals meeting on Sept. 4, numerous residents of Plain Township spoke about the construction.

“I’m not against the construction, but I feel it would have a negative impact on the neighborhood,” Resident Victor Marran said.

The owner of the McDonald’s, Tom Locke, and his lawyers presented a traffic study conducted on the additional traffic McDonald’s would create. It said that the increase in traffic would not have a negative effect on the immediate area. Locke also said his employees would pick up the trash every hour to decrease litter. These comments have not changed the neighbors opinions. A petition was created by the surrounding neighbors to get the construction stopped.

“I signed the petition to stop construction. For me, there is no advantage to the addition,” Grove neighborhood resident Anna Rustifo said. “Noise levels and rowdiness would increase around the area.”

The McDonald’s construction has become a topic for high school students as well.

“I do not want McDonald’s to be built,” Yannone said. “The traffic leaving school would be more congested than it already is. I would definitely oppose the construction if I lived in the neighborhood.”

[Updated Aug. 7, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]