This town doesn't like drive thrus. I never heard of this problem before.

:confused: :confused: Bizarre story. I’m nearly fifty and have never encountered this problem before. Drive-thrus are always L shaped. You turn in off the street, pass the building, and then turn to get in line. Or they are tucked away at the back of a shopping center. No one builds a drive thru that starts directly off any street.

I live in a metro area with almost 600,000 people. I’ve visited several cities and never seen any traffic problem with drive thrus. Banning them would be a huge, devastating blow to the elderly and disabled. The American Disabilities act would probably come into issue.

Anyone encounter this traffic problem before?

If Gail is complaining about waiting 10 minutes to get into the parking lots wait until she has to wait to get a parking spot because everyone is at McDonald’s for lunch.

Hmm, where I live, most of the objections to drive thru’s have to do with environmental concerns. A steady 10+ cars, lined up, pumping exhaust fumes into the nearby parking lot and neighbourhood. At least at a traditional restaurant people shut off their cars and go in to get the food.

Not that we’re likely to ban them, there are too many existing ones, but they are getting harder to get permits for, and communities are shying away from them, for the reasons I’ve stated.

The only place I’ve seen drive-thrus be a problem is at In-n-Outs. The one in Ventura even has a sign that says if the drive-thru is full to park in the overflow lot. (Yes, they have an extra parking lot). People don’t always do it.

The ChickFilA near us is in its own little island at the end of a Target parking lot. If there are more than 4 cars in line at the drive-thru, it’s really tough to get into their parking lot. Lunch time is pure insanity there. I suppose I could understand it somewhat if they were the only game in town, but along a mile or so stretch, there’s every fast food place you could name, plus a number of sit-down restaurants. Yet people are willing to wait in ridiculously long lines for a chicken sandwich, blocking the adjacent service road on occasion. It’s nuts!

Bad design or underestimating traffic can definitely cause the issues she’s talking about. There are a few Tim Hortons locations that cause this in Toronto, the number of cars that they have flowing through the drive thru is just much higher than the lanes are able to handle.

There should definitely be planning approvals to make sure that these things don’t happen but a full ban seems excessive.

Yeah, terrible design is the issue. There are a ton of drive through windows around here and I can only think of two that cause problems because they don’t have enough space set aside for them. (I’m looking at you, Dairy Queen and Chik-Fil-A.)

I hope banning them doesn’t catch on; I will forever be indebted to them because they let me get a drink or something to eat on road trips without having to wake the baby up and drag her inside. More places should have them.

I only recall one problem, which was caused by that derecho leaving a million people without power. All the open drive thrus and gas stations on the main drag were backed up onto the street!

Yeah, I’ve seen it, particularly at one of the local McDonald’s here at lunchtime, where there are sometimes more than a dozen cars at a time in line.

There are some towns around here that limit access to drive-through places by forcing all their customers to enter from a side street, rather than backing up onto the main road.

I never understand why people would never wait in line in McDonald’s or whatever if there were ten people in front of them, but will gladly wait even longer to use a drive-through.

Lots of times I can pull into a parking space, get my order, and be gone before I would even gotten sight of the drive-through window if I waited.

Of course, I would have had to walk ten yards. :rolleyes:

I’m (trying) to avoid fast food these days. However, for me it wasn’t reluctance to walk ten yards, but just prefer waiting in my own space, listing to the radio or talking on the phone. Much better than being inside one of these places.

McLean, VA has almost no drive-throughs. I suspect that the planning commission refuses to permit them.

There is one McDonald’s that I can think of, no others. When Celtling was littler it drove me nuts, and I pretty much avoided shopping there altogether. The one good thing is that it encourages small Mom and Pop delis in each office building. I doubt they woudl all survive if drive-throughs were available.

I have learned a new word today! Two, if you count the spanish one, too. And considering where I live, that’s a good thing. :stuck_out_tongue: Even after reading the definitions for them, I’m not sure if we have those or not. Probably not; we do get the straight, long windy storms, but they typically blow over quite fast and wipe out the areas on either side of us instead. I think all the cow farts scare storms to the edges.

I’m not a fan of McDonald’s double lane drive thru. Merging into the one pick up lane can be tricky. Some people don’t even look or yield. But, it is more efficient and gets people in/out quicker.

I prefer Wendys approach. During the lunch rush they have someone out there taking orders with a wireless pad. They get a whole line of orders done that way and speed up the pick up.


You seen people with walkers or canes? Imagine them slowly trying to walk into a fast food place. Then carry their food and walk out.

My grandmother ran a lot of errands after her stroke. She got her medicine from a drive thru pharmacy, fast food, and banking. She needed help grocery shopping because that meant walking into the store. My cousin always helped her into a electric shopping scooter.

Drive-thrus are a nice convenience no doubt. But losing them is devastating? A matter for the ADA?

I’m pretty sure automobile access to McCafe is not a basic human right.

Except it doesn’t get people in and out quicker. It just turns the drive thru into a real life recreation of the I Love Lucy candy factory episode. With one order window they can already take orders faster than they can fill them. To get people in and out faster, they need to speed up the back end, not the front end.

I’m suddenly reminded of Mr. Krabs punching so many holes for the drive thru traffic that tied up Bikini Bottom and collapsing his restaurant in the process.

ADA has no bearing on requiring drive-thrus for any establishment. Building codes and ADA would apply in the proper construction of a drive-thru, however, if an establishment chose to use one.