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A drive-through for DQ

City planners recommend CPU for restaurant, rezoning for fire district maintenance building

At the positive recommendation of the Morris Planning Commission, the Morris City Council will take final action regarding the local Dairy Queen and the fire district's new projects.

The Planning Commission heard presentations from both parties during its regular meeting Wednesday.

A conditional use permit was approved for recommendation to the council to allow Dairy Queen to add a drive-through window to its facility on Illinois 47. The request was made by owners Michael and Lois Englert, and Jennifer Duffy.

The drive-through would be located on the north side of the restaurant and allow for the stacking of five cars, said Duffy to the commission. There are diagonal parking stalls there currently. These stalls will be moved over on the same side for the drive-through lane.

Building and Zoning Officer Bill Cheshareck said he had concerns with the exit of the lot. He asked Duffy if she was able to contact the Illinois Department of Transportation about getting a curb cut to widen the drive or to move it.

"On the north side, if you go straight on (to get out) there is a curb in front of you," he said.

Duffy said that morning she had met with IDOT and started the paperwork for the proper permits to cut the curb out so drivers can drive straight out.

City Planner Mike Hoffman said he usually likes to see some landscaping added to Illinois 47 frontage projects, but the property has no green space to add landscaping. He mentioned the possibility of planters in the future.

The Planning Commission is also forwarding a positive recommendation regarding a zoning amendment for the Morris Fire Protection and Ambulance District's new property.

The fire district purchased the old truck testing facility on Gore Road. It is being used for the district 's repair center to work on its vehicles and, in the distant future, to add a training structure on the property.

The district is using the existing facility. The possible future training tower would be built of masonry material and will not be used for live fire training. It will be used for practicing the use of ladders and hoses.

At the Planning Commission, the district was asking for the property to be rezoned from residential to manufacturing. The city will be voting on annexing the less-than-one acre parcel Monday. All new annexations come into the city as residential.

City Attorney Scott Belt noted that as part of the annexation agreement, if the fire district decides to sell the property in the future, it will come before the city and request a zoning change to light-manufacturing. This was decided after talking with the Fields of Saratoga homeowner's association on concerns for what could come there in the future with manufacturing zoning.

At Monday's regular council meeting, the council will vote on the zoning recommendation, and hold a public hearing on the annexation agreement before voting on it.

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