Arroyo Grande residents won't have a new fried chicken restaurant in town anytime soon.
The Arroyo Grande City Council unanimously denied an application to open a Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen at the corner of Faeh Avenue and El Camino Real after the city's Planning Commission recommended approval of the application last month.
Ela Foods Inc. applied last summer to open a Popeyes — known for its Southern-style fried chicken. The restaurant would have been a 2,650-square-foot, one-story building with a drive-through and 36-space parking lot, according to preliminary planning documents.
The site is sandwiched between a residential neighborhood along Faeh Avenue, Francisco’s Country Kitchen and a Park and Ride bus stop.
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Neighbors heavily protested the application, saying the fast-food restaurant was not a good fit for the neighborhood, partially because the drive-through would keep residents awake and increase traffic and light pollution.
Arroyo Grande Community Development Director Teresa McClish said the city will now reach out to the applicant to determine next steps, including looking for other potential locations for the restaurant or "to explore alternate opportunities."