‘Fries with that?’
New A&W outlet may be coming to Sydney.
A new restaurant may soon have local fast food lovers craving a classic burger.
The iconic A&W restaurant chain is currently working on a project to bring a standalone restaurant to Sydney.
The project has received a development permit from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality. The proposed location for the new drive-thru restaurant is on Prince Street next to the newly completed Bank of Montreal building.
David Paton, CBRM development officer, said the permit was issued to the restaurant on Nov. 8.
“The development permit basically says the location and the site plan they’ve submitted is in compliance with the land-use bylaw,” he said.
In order for the business to begin construction, the company must receive a building permit from the municipality.
“Essentially they would have to submit building plans that would be reviewed by a building official for compliance to the building code,” said Paton. “The turnaround period for a new construction permit is two to three weeks, it’s usually quicker than that if all the information that’s required is submitted — we’re usually looking at a turnaround time of around 10 working days.”
A&W currently has three restaurants in Cape Breton, with locations in Glace Bay and Port Hawkesbury as well as the Mayflower Mall in Sydney.
Pierre Clement, A&W director of real estate for Atlantic Canada and Quebec, said Atlantic Canada is an important market for the restaurant chain.
“Sydney is definitely a place where we want to be,” he said. “We are in the mall (Mayflower Mall) currently and also in Glace Bay, but with no representation in such a big community, we feel that the community would receive us well and we want to be there.”
Clement said the company is now working on the finalization of the Sydney project.
“We’re hoping to be able to confirm, depending on a couple of things with the city and with the landlord with getting the project going,” he said. “We feel confident that something will be happening very shortly.”
Clement said it’s unknown as to when the restaurant could be built.
“It’s dependent on other people, so it’s kind of hard for me to predict at this time,” he said. “Obviously we would like to be in the market place as soon as possible, but it’s depended on outside forces.”
Paton said the proposed restaurant is great news.
“Any time a new business wants to open near the downtown area and can take advantage of existing infrastructure,” he said. “It’s only positive news and hopefully the work that’s going on will contribute to more things going on in that area, which is what we want to see.”
Once the new building is built, Clement said the restaurant will likely be open 24 hours a day.
“It’s a matter of convenience for our customers, so we want to be convenient to them where ever they may be — with our only representation in Sydney, right now, being at the mall, it’s limited hours,” he said. “Most of our competition are running 24 hour restaurants or close to, and to be able to compete in the market place, we have to be able to offer the customer our services as the same par as our competition.”
When asked about possible other A&W locations in Cape Breton, Clement said there are some other sites being considered, aside from Sydney.
Clement confirmed that Bill Colbourne will be the franchisee for the new proposed Sydney location.