Naperville Dunkin’ Go location proposed for Route 59

Dunkin' Go exterior rendering by architect
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A new concept from the folks at Dunkin’ could soon set up shop along the Route 59 commercial corridor in Naperville, following a recent favorable recommendation from the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission.

Dunkin’ Go has been proposed for a currently vacant 0.78-acre parcel, located at 1671 N. Route 59. More specifically, it is on the southwest corner of Route 59 and Diehl Road.

A drive-thru only operation

Unlike a traditional Dunkin’ store, this particular location would be drive-thru only, meaning customers would not have the option of dining in or picking up purchases inside the store.

“There won’t be any interior dining space. It is only for a mobile-based app or drive-thru ordering,” said Hemal Purohit of Purohit Architects Inc., the firm hired to conceptualize this specific Dunkin’ Go operation.

In his presentation to commissioners, Purohit said efforts have been made to make the business — to be located on a gateway spot into Naperville — attractive and eye-catching.

A stone and brick masonry exterior is proposed for much of the exterior, with some of the Dunkin’ brand colors sprinkled in as well. Specific signage that will intermingle a Naperville gateway sign into the community is also part of the proposal.

Commissioner Manas Athanikar voiced support for the plans submitted. He said, “I think this is a great development. I commend the petitioner for working with staff on the signage.”

Pebblewood residents have concerns

City officials have also been supportive of the plans submitted, describing the concept as an efficient use for a small site that would otherwise be difficult to develop.

A number of nearby residents within the Pebblewood community, however, have raised traffic concerns. None of the residential property owners appeared at the May 3 Planning and Zoning Commission meeting, but several did submit written comments.

“Traffic has always been hazardous on this extremely busy corner, and I feel it will become even more dangerous,” Patty Colao-Cramer wrote in her public comments. “I cannot imagine the traffic mess, more accidents, and the safety issues of our children living in the condos, and townhouses in the Pebblewood Community.”

Franchisee responds to concerns

Prakash Patel is the Dunkin’ franchisee behind the proposed drive-thru operation. The neighbors’ concerns, he said, have been taken into account with the design of the business.

“We have a double drive-thru that will help and make service faster,” Patel said, pointing to one example that should minimize the stacking of vehicles traversing through the drive-thru. “That is something Dunkin’ suggested.”

Patel has a history of operating Dunkin’ stores in Naperville. He currently has two other operations, including one a mile away from the site of the Dunkin’ Go proposal.

“Both are doing extremely well right now,” Patel said. “We are very happy having two Dunkin’ Donuts in Naperville and would like to add this third one.”

The commissioners’ favorable recommendation advances to the city council for a final decision.

Photo rendering courtesy: Purohit Architects

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