Restaurant torn down in Middletown

Breiel Boulevard restaurant to get two drive-thru lanes, smaller dining area

Demolition crews spent Friday tearing down the McDonald’s restaurant that has stood on South Breiel Boulevard for the past 43 years to make way for a new updated version.

A demolition crew worker said the the building would be completely torn down by the end of Friday. Two pieces of heavy equipment were knocking down the building and dumping the rubble, scrap metal and other debris into heavy trucks and refuse containers that were lined up.

A number of motorists slowed their vehicles as they drove along Lewis Street to take photos with their cell phones as the familiar structure was toppled.

McDonald’s representatives said the new restaurant will have a smaller dining area and two-lane drive-thru similar to the McDonald’s on Verity Parkway. About 70 percent of the Breiel Boulevard restaurant’s business comes from drive-thru customers and the expanded drive-thru is expected to increase business at the location when it re-opens in December, said Martha Reid, the store’s general manager.

Dining room seating in the new arrangement will total about 70 seats — down from about 90 seats currently at the restaurant. The new structure will have a similar orientation as the current one, but will be moved slightly forward toward Breiel Boulevard.

McDonald’s representatives said the new restaurant will feature free Wi-Fi and convenience outlets throughout the dining room for electronics, a wood finish décor, and 100 percent LED lighting for energy efficiency.

Reid said the restaurant currently employs about 75 people and will be hiring more to work there. During the rebuild, employees will be working at other McDonald’s restaurants in the city on South Main Street, Verity Parkway and on Commerce Drive near the Interstate 75/Ohio 122 interchange, she said.

The Breiel location, which was built in 1972, underwent a huge renovation in 2002 when the late Steve Posey, who formerly owned the local franchise, invested $369,000 into the store, remodeling the lobby, kitchen and restrooms and expanding the workforce there by 12 employees, according to Journal-News archives.

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