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Derry Twp. unanimously approves zoning change - abc27 WHTM

Dauphin County

Derry Twp. unanimously approves zoning change

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Derry Township supervisors unanimously approved a proposed zoning change that would allow fast casual restaurants, like Chipotle Mexican Grill, Panera Bread Company and Starbucks, downtown in the historic Hershey Village.

Reaction has been mixed from Hershey residents when it comes to a Chipotle in their neighborhood.

Last month, the Derry Township Board of Supervisors proposed the change following a community-wide debate regarding an ordinance prohibiting fast-food restaurants in the area.

Chipotle, which expressed interest in building on a vacant site on historic Chocolate Avenue, said their establishments are "fast casual."

Board chairman Chris Abruzzo said to be considered a "fast casual" establishment, restaurants must offer sit-down and take-out options, must cook food to order and cannot have drive-thru options.

Abruzzo told abc27 though a handful of local restaurant owners were against the change, the majority of Hershey residents support it.

"We'd like to offer our residents the kind of selection and variety that brings people downtown and keeps people downtown so that our other business owners who aren't in the restaurant business, can have successful business because of the foot traffic coming downtown," Abruzzo said. "It's really like a big puzzle and you have to put the pieces together the right way."

In January, the Hershey Trust applied for a variance to sell a parcel of land along Chocolate Avenue to a York-based developer with plans to build a Chipotle. There is no word on where those plans stand currently.

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