Marlborough City Council approves Raising Cane’s special permit

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By Stuart Foster, Community Advocate

Arrows guide traffic towards an existing McDonald’s location on Boston Post Road West in Marlborough. A proposed Raising Cane’s restaurant would occupy space next to McDonald’s that is currently occupied by the Loyal Companion pet shop. (Photo/Dakota Antelman)

MARLBOROUGH – The Marlborough City Council voted 10-1 to approve a special permit for a
proposed Raising Cane’s restaurant at 141 Boston Post Rd. West during a meeting on Sept. 13.

The restaurant, which specializes in chicken fingers, requires a special permit because it would have two drive-through service lanes.

The lone vote against approval was from City Councilor Mark Oram due to a letter of opposition to the plan from McDonald’s, an abutter of the Raising Cane’s site that would share an entrance.

Oram wanted the motion to be sent back to the Urban Affairs Subcommittee, which he said should then meet with the two parties to sort out the issues, particularly concern from McDonald’s over traffic flow and safety.

“I cannot support this tonight based on that; I would support a continuation to refer it back to Urban Affairs,” Oram said.

City Councilor Kathleen Robey, the chair of the Urban Affairs Subcommittee, said that
McDonald’s concerns could be valid. She that they are unrelated to the issue of the special permit, though, and would be better suited for discussion during consideration of Raising Cane’s final site plan.

“I think that there will be an opportunity for some discussion at the site plan to talk about the letter, but I do not feel that any of their concerns were appropriate for the actual special permit document,” Robey said.

The Urban Affairs Subcommittee unanimously approved a draft of this special permit at a
meeting on Aug. 16.

Raising Cane’s attorney Michael Brangwynne spoke at that meeting, saying that those
supporting this project had been in contact with McDonald’s in efforts to respond to their
concerns.

Though no identified McDonald’s representatives spoke at that meeting, McDonald’s lawyer Phil Squires did address the City Council back on July 19.

“I am not speaking in opposition, but we have some concerns about traffic,” he said at the time.

The Marlborough Raising Cane’s, if it earns final site plan approval, will be located at the
current site of the Loyal Companion pet store off Boston Post Rd.

Supporters of this project first filed their special permit application in May.

Since then, news of Raising Cane’s potentially coming to Marlborough has excited many local fans of the beloved fast-food chain.

Raising Cane’s already has one location in Boston. Outside of that, though, its next closest locations are hours away in Ohio and Virginia.