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Asked No One: Why is That New Winter Park Wendy's Connected to a Shopping Strip?

We now present for perhaps the first and last time, a new feature called "Asked No One." Not all experiments yield fruit. This might be one of those experiments. You've been warned

A new Wendy's is going up on a 1.52 acre property near the intersection of W. Fairbanks Avenue and Orlando Avenue at 1308, 1324 and 1350 West Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park. The restaurant will have 2,430 SF, contain 60 seats, and have a drive thru component.

A 6,240 SF retail/office building will be connected to the Wendy's when complete.


...asked no one.

The developer of this project originally desired the two buildings to be separate. In 2017 he presented that idea to the City.

They said no for two reasons:

  1. The placement of the Wendys on the site at that time forced it to extend over onto the rear portion of the site facing Gene Street which was zoned Office. In order to allow the Wendy's spillage onto this portion the land use designations in the Comprehensive Plan and Zoning Map would need to be amended from office to commercial on that rear portion of the site.

  2. The site plan with the two unattached buildings did not provide enough of a unified building arrangement for the city's planning and zoning board.

A third concern was increased traffic the project will bring to the neighborhood behind it, but since the building got built anyway, that clearly wasn't as big a concern as the other two.

The city said no and the project was withdrawn from consideration.

The developer returned later with a new version of the project addressing the two big concerns.

  1. They skooched the Wendy's so far towards Fairbanks that none of it oozed onto the Office-zoned area of the property thus negating the need for it to be re-designated from office to commercial. Now that whole back half is nothing but parking lot and dumpsters.

  2. They skootched the two buildings together forming a visual connection between the two and gave both buildings a common architectural style. Now there's a shaded outdoor seating area fronting Fairbanks.

Neither of these changes impacts the impending increase in traffic the project will bring to the neighborhood behind it.

The City Council said mmkay.

The original rendering of the Wendy's prior to the developer co-joining the restaurant and the retail space.


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