The future of Braum’s opening in west Manhattan is up in the air after the Manhattan Board of Zoning Appeals last week denied 0-5 a signage request from the restaurant. The city is waiting to see what Braum’s next move is.
Braum’s, an Oklahoma-based franchise featuring burgers, ice cream and a small grocery area, requested a total of 12 signs to display around the exterior walls of the proposed restaurant, at the corner of Anderson Avenue and Scenic Drive. The city restricts buildings in that district to only one sign on each wall of the building, said Barry Beagle, city senior planner.
“As a four-walled structure, basically they would be entitled to have one sign per wall face,” Beagle said.
Manhattan’s Community Development department did not support Braum’s request, Beagle said.
“Any time somebody is seeking a variance request, they have to prove and demonstrate that there is a unique condition associated with the property that — unless relief is granted in the form of a variance — it would suffer some unnecessary hardship,” Beagle said.
Beagle said the board felt the restaurant would still have “plenty of exposure” and “necessary visibility” with its pylon sign without Braum’s having to “deviate” from the city’s sign requirements. The pylon sign is proposed to be at the corner of Kimball and Anderson avenues.
Braum’s also requested a conditional-use permit (CUP) to allow the creation of restaurant with a drive-thru.
The drive-thru is an “added component,” that also has to be compatible with the residential area, Beagle said. The board unanimously recommended the CUP for the drive-thru on a 5-0 vote.
“They did not have any issues associated with that,” Beagle said.
The developer aimed to have a replat consideration for the area, but decided to pull the item from the Manhattan City Commission’s meeting agenda on Tuesday because of the Braum’s company’s uncertainty about the project, Beagle said. Beagle said he was informed about the decision to pull the item off the agenda by Bret Trembly with Alfred Benesch and Co.
Beagle said Benesch represents the property owner, Scenic Crossings, LLC.
Beagle said, “the ball is in (Braum’s) court at this point in time,” and the city is “more than happy” to have Braum’s open in Manhattan.
“It’s just a matter of complying with the city’s standards,” he said.
Braum’s officials didn’t respond to calls for comment Monday and Tuesday.