Chipotle coming to Ames

Chipotle Mexican Grill Logo

Courtesy of Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle Mexican Grill Logo

Mackenzie Nading

The corner of Fifth Street and South Duff Avenue is going to be gaining some Mexican flair in the near future. Chipotle, the fast-food Mexican restaurant chain, is going to become the newest member to the Ames business district.

According to their website, Chipotle restaurants are focused on demonstrating that “food served fast doesn’t have to be fast-food.” By using high quality ingredients, Chipotle tries to separate themselves from their similar fast food competitors such as Qdoba and Panchero’s.

Ames City Planner Charlie Kuester said that although the restaurant has been approved, the actual building has yet to ensue.

“The city of Ames approved the site plan about two months ago,” Kuester said, “At this point, whenever the developer wants to move forward, the building can begin, but he has not applied for the building permit yet.”

When a restaurant decides to open its doors in Ames, it must contact the city and request permission via a permit. After a permit is requested to build and is approved by the city, it is back in the hands of the corporation again. This back-and-forth negotiation can be time-consuming, but Kuester said he has every expectation that the building of the new restaurant will go forward.

The future home of Chipotle was once occupied by two buildings, the old Sprint cell phone store and a local bar. Both businesses have since closed or moved and the land is ready to be occupied once again.

Ames is focused on creating a business district that is welcoming to new and interested firms. The city itself does not go out and recruit businesses to open, but Kuester believes that a good environment will do the work for them.

“The city doesn’t go and recruit individual firms and restaurants,” Kuester said. “But we create a location and atmosphere conducive for businesses to open up.”