Last Friday we opened up our poll for voting on the question of whether or not Novato was ready for an In-N-Out. Many comments and over 200 votes later, the poll - still on-going - has some interesting results for locals. (See below; vote to see results or click "See Results" if you've already voted.)
The distinctive red-and-white In-N-Out drive-through chain is planning to open a new franchise at the corner at 399 Entrada Drive and 400 Enfrente Road, as previously described on Novato Patch, but adjoining properties would make the location even more desireable. The business would presumably be visible from Hwy. 101 Southbound, just before the Ignacio exit.
In-N-Out Burger standards specify that a drive-through have enough space to allow at least 12 cars to stack up in addition to 45 parking spaces, according to this article on Patch. In Mill Valley, traffic was a big hurdle for In-N-Out Burger and the location in Strawberry was approved without a drive-through window.
Parking might also be a hitch for the Enfrente Road property, without the neighboring lots. Square footage falls short of the company's minimum 45,000 square feet required by about 16,519 square feet. Until these requirements are met, and the city planning department approves the business, In-N-Out is just a proposal.
Other In-N-Out locations are in Petaluma and Mill Valley, as well as Santa Rosa. The Santa Rosa diner near Steele Lane has caused numerous traffic problems and driver complaints since it opened a little over a year ago, according to articles in the Nov. 18, 2010 Press Democrat.
Finally, at a public meeting in the Ignacio area last August, there was considerable objection to the proposed location, as the accompanying video shows.
All of which begs the question: Do we need an In-N-Out in Novato? Let your vote be counted, and your voice be heard. (Remember, this is a non-scientific poll, and your civility is requested in your comments!)