Yesterday was the day that the new McDonald's opened in Lower Burrell, right next to where the previous McDonald's had been on Leechburg Road. The opening was eagerly awaited by many in the Valley, including a group of retirees who were accustomed to meeting at the old restaurant each day for coffee; they were forced temporarily into a nomadic existence when the old restaurant closed and was demolished.
As someone who drives past the site twice a day, I was impressed by the speed with which the new restaurant was built, and the coordination of the workers who accomplished so many different tasks simultaneously on a small piece of land. They worked quickly and efficiently from the time ground was broken for the new restaurant, to the time the old restaurant was closed and its demolition began, through the time they paved the parking lot and finished the new restaurant. I don't think there was a day when I did not notice big changes on the construction site.
There was a crowd in the new restaurant yesterday, eager to see what it looked like from the inside. I thought the dining area was attractive; the large windows let in more sunlight than there had been in the old restaurant. There were two flatscreen TV's mounted to the wall, and a variety of possibilities for seating in booths or at tables with different sizes.
Outside, there was a lot of fascination with the drive-through window. The new restaurant has a double drive-thru lane. It is easy to see how two drivers can be placing orders simultaneously. What is not yet obvious to me is how people in the two drive-thru lanes pick up their food.
It's good to have the McDonald's back.
And have I mentioned that McDonald's is socially responsible in working with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers to ensure better wages for the people who pick their tomatoes?