Campbell residents push back against proposed Chick-Fil-A

CAMPBELL, Calif. (KGO) -- Popular fast-food chain Chick-Fil-A wants to expand to Campbell near the Pruneyard Shopping Center but is running into resistance.

Some residents are concerned the restaurant will paralyze an already congested area.

"If this passes, the city will spend a very long period of time doing damage-control to the neighborhood," said Campbell resident Catherine Clock, who lives nearby.

Last fall, the city planning commission narrowly passed a proposal for Chick-Fil-A to build on Bascom Avenue at the current site of a Denny's restaurant. However, the project was appealed and the final decision now goes to the city council in two weeks.

"You're going to have all these cars queued up.... you're going to have people doing U-turns," said Clock. "You're going to have people in the area who don't know the area because they're coming here for the Chick-Fil-A."

This isn't the first time a popular chain has battled resistance in Campbell.

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Last year, the city council voted to deny In-N-Out's application to replace the empty Elephant Bar on Hamilton Avenue off Highway 17.

Current city councilmember and former mayor Rich Waterman is still undecided about Chick-Fil-A, but says he's keeping an open mind.

"It's not a perfect solution, and that's going to be the give and take on it, of how much traffic we want, versus if we don't approve this project, what about the next project?" asked Waterman.

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Opponents say they aren't necessarily anti-Chick-Fil-A, but rather they just don't think the Bascom Avenue location makes sense in terms of size and scope.

In fact, hundreds of residents have already signed a petition against the proposal.

"By adding something like a drive-thru restaurant backing up to a residential neighborhood, which is unusual as it is, the influx of cars will change that fact that we're a walkable city," said Campbell resident Mary Broxon.

According to the traffic impact study that was prepared for the city, Chick-Fil-A would bring more than 2,200 additional vehicles to the area on a daily basis. However, supporters say the project will add jobs and a desirable storefront on Bascom Avenue.
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