Expect long lines; council to vote on community funding contracts

The venerable California-based fast food restaurant In-N-Out Burger has applied for a conditional use permit and approval a development plan in Oro Valley.

The privately owned burger chain will get a hearing at the Wednesday, Aug. 5 Oro Valley Town Council meeting.

Both the Development Review Board and Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval for the fast-food restaurant's requests. Development review did request that the restaurant find a replacement palm tree variety to the ones proposed in its original landscape plan. Many In-N-Out restaurants display the trademark palm trees crossed in the middle to form an X. The company wanted to use a palm called Washingtonia robusta, or Mexican fan palm, but town code prohibits the variety because of the extreme height of the tree, towering up to 100 feet.

The company switched to a similar tree called a Guadalupe palm that tops out at less than 50 feet tall.

A possible negative that could impact the final approval of In-N-Out is the burger joint's popularity: When new restaurants open, they tend to attract crowds.

When the In-N-Out opened near El Con Mall in Tucson in April 2007, people waited hours to get in, and cars lined up 100-deep to order at the drive-thru window. The lines persisted for months. Similar queues formed when In-N-Out opened in Marana in November 2007.

In-N-Out opened its first store in 1948 in Baldwin Park, Calif. Today, the company owns more than 200 restaurants, all located in the western U.S.

Community funding final approval

An agenda item for the Aug. 5 meeting includes a series of financial participation agreements the council agreed to when it approved a final budget for fiscal 2010 on June 17.

The agreements include payments totaling $277,717 to various community groups and non-profit organizations.

Finalization of the financial participation agreements would release the funds so the groups can begin collecting money.

The following are the recipients and funds allotted:

Amphi Foundation    $2,000

Arizona Distance Classic    $3,000

Arizona Paralyzed Veterans    $4,500

Arthiritis Foundation    $1,375

Catalina Community Services    $3,750

Community Food Bank    $15,000

C-Path    $25,000

GOVAC    $61,930

Interfaith Community Services     $1,250

MTCVB    $72,000

Oro Valley Parade    $1,893

Pima Council on Aging    $9,019

Perimeter Bicycling    $13,750

Project Graduation    $10,000

TREO    $40,000

TriSports Racing    $13,250

Total     $277,717

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