Users of the McDonald’s drive-thru in Throggs Neck have choked off Philip Avenue traffic for years, and neighborhood residents are ‘not loving it’.
On any given day, cars full of hungry McD customers line up on both sides of Philip Avenue to access the drive-thru at lunch and dinner time, making the narrow street from East Tremont to Revere Avenue practically impassable.
However, a solution to the problem may be just months away.
The fast-food fueled headache may soon end, as preliminary plans have been submitted to demolish the current restaurant building and build a new one, sporting an entirely different look.
The plan calls for relocating the Philip Avenue driveway to the far-west side of the property to take drive-thru vehicles off that street, the creation of a new, dedicated drive-thru exit onto East Tremont and a separate entrance to the parking area that also leads to the drive-thru lane.
The plan was presented to Community Board 10 at its Tuesday, June 13 meeting.
“We are working closely with members of the community board to address our proposal to upgrade the restaurant at 3360 E. Tremont Avenue, and we look forward to developing a site plan that best serves our community.” stated franchise owner Sam DeLuca in request for comment.
Eileen Welsh, the project manager overseeing the proposal for the law firm K.L. Gates L.L.C., said the McDonalds Corporation is looking to renovate some of their older stores.
The 3,907-square-foot McDonald’s was built in 1975.
“In connection with that update, they also want to rework the layout to alleviate the traffic issues there,” she said.
The new layout would move the building further south along East Tremont, closer to the parking lot of the adjacent Fine Fare Supermarket.
“The community board wanted us to try alternative layouts because they are still concerned it would still cause queuing onto Philip and East Tremont,” she said.
Board feedback is expected at the CB 10 September meeting, she added.
Throggs Neck Merchant Association president Bobby Jean said that while it was unfortunate the store would be closed for an undetermined amount of time he was happy to hear that changes were planned for the drive-thru at the busy intersection that is also impacted by double parked U.S. Postal Service trucks from the post office across the street.
“Sometimes people don’t use common sense – they see the line of cars and instead of waiting on the side of the road so that the motorists can pass, they stop right in back of the person on line and next thing you know you have a traffic jam,” Jean said. “Thank God we haven’t had any bad accidents there, but I’ve seen many arguments.”
Once the plans are finalized, the current square-shaped building will be demolished.
Welsh said she did not know what the duration of time would be between the closing of the current store and the opening of the new rectanguler one.
The property is leased to the McDonald’s Corporation by 3680 Tremont Realty LLC.