Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Corydon and Stafford Swiss Chalet/Harvey's Drive Thru

Larger Harvey's/Swiss Chalet Drive Thru Toronto
Missed it when it was mentioned in the Free Press in October. At that time, it was indicated that the only thing that was holding up the development of the old Chicken Delight location at Stafford and Corydon was the wait for an additional franchisee to share the corner

It was well known that Harvey's had won the right to build a drive thru at the corner that had held a Chicken Delight since 1981. In a controversial decision, a drive thru was allowed to continue. It was felt that some attempt had been made to hide the fact to the owners and developers that a drive thru was grandfathered in to the neighbourhood plan.

A majority of city councillors felt this created unfair circumstances and awarded the Harvey's a winning bid for the decaying Chicken Delight property. Some additional zoning improvements were added and the developer was given the go to proceed to construction stage.

Months and months have gone by and aside from a mid fall update that appeared in the Free Press, nothing seemed to be happening.

Well now, according to the CBC, the additional franchisee has come aboard and we should soon see at the corner a Swiss Chalet/Harvey's Drive Thru.

This is not the first time we have had the combo in Winnipeg. Swiss Chalet/Harvey's operated out of the old Winnipeg International Airport for many years. The move to the new terminal left the city with neither restaurant until Swiss Chalet opened on Kenaston and Harvey's opened on Portage Avenue.

Given this city's love of Swiss Chalet as evidenced by the packed parking lot on Kenaston, it is interesting that it took this long to get another one.

Corydon is at that uncomfortable time where residential and commercial development is increasing how busy the area is. There are legitimate concerns about traffic, noise and the like. They should be addressed but not to the point of driving people and business away from the area.

Osborne Village has gone through challenges throughout its development. While some have reacted with disdain for Second Cup, Starbucks and American Apparel coming, the truth is those businesses have helped anchor certain blocks and enticing people to local fare all throughout the Village.

The upset over Safeway and Shopper's expansion was legitimate but overwrought. The Safeway that emerged from the planning process is a lynchpin of success for the Village. Likewise, the Shopper's may have displaced a DVD rental store and restaurant but it also improved the corner's face out to Osborne as well as offer expanded services. And yes, a 24 hour pharmacy is needed in a  city Winnipeg's size.

And what of the Corydon Village?

It looks like development resistance has reached a prickly time.

There may be anger over a Harvey's/Swiss Chalet at the corner of Stafford and Corydon by some but it was a drive thru for 30 years and the neighbourhood didn't fall apart. It is likely the restaurants will be welcomed by many who live in the area.

I think pushing for improvements to the area planning are worthwhile and with luck and care, Corydon can continue to be one of the more desirable areas of the city.


The Great Canadian Talk Show said...

I am surprised you did not mention that the opposition to the grandfathering of the drive-thru was led by Coun. Gerbasi's sister who lives somewhere in the vicinity and was concerned about her property value, and that Gerbasi did not recuse herself from the matter. The attempt to engineer social change by city staff playing loose with the process is of great concern, given who was in concurrence with the end goal.

John Dobbin said...

@TGTS I forgot about that aspect. It is probably why other councillors felt the need to rectify the matter.

It is my opinion that after 30 years, another drive thru isn't going to anything one way or the other to Corydon.

Anonymous said...

Corydon was already ruined with all the strip malls they've added anyway. Might as well tear down the houses for a parking lot and blame Gerbasi for that too.