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Thu, March 21

Local fast food chains get makeovers, improvements

Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier<p>
Demolition workers bring down the drive thru at the McDonald’s on Miller Valley Road in Prescott. The restaurant has been completely demolished and will be reopened in a brand new building sometime later this year.

Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier<p> Demolition workers bring down the drive thru at the McDonald’s on Miller Valley Road in Prescott. The restaurant has been completely demolished and will be reopened in a brand new building sometime later this year.

PRESCOTT VALLEY - A couple of popular fast-food chains are getting facelifts.

Representatives with the McDonald's and Burger King chains said this week that the restaurants are getting makeovers to make them more comfortable and easier to use for customers.

That means new dining rooms, more comfortable seats, easier access to beverage refills and wireless Internet connections for patrons.

Mike Laird, with MCL Enterprises Inc., said this week the Prescott Valley Burger King did not work well with customers.

Forcing customers to take their empty beverage cups to the cashier for refills and a drive-through that hampered driver's ability to get their cars through, are just a couple of the problems with the old setup.

The planning process on the new look started about three months ago and work began on tearing out the old dining room in late July.

In a matter of weeks, Laird said patrons will enjoy an entirely new dining room experience comparable to an Outback Steakhouse.

Changes to the roof, drive-through, parking lot, exterior appearance and completely new dining room are some of the changes that Laird says will make the dining a more comfortable experience.

"To stay competitive in the quick-serve restaurant industry you need to re-image from time to time to keep up with some of the new styles and images that are out there and it was absolutely time to do that with the Prescott Valley Burger King," he said. It's a 20-year-old restaurant and it needed a facelift."

It is a similar story for the Prescott McDonald's franchise.

Area Supervisor Cecelia Harges, with GLC Restaurants Inc., said providing a new experience for their customers is the reason behind the complete teardown of the McDonald's restaurant on Miller Valley Road.

Originally built in July 1977, Harges said the franchise owner and the corporation is working to give customers a more modern look.

"It was time to freshen up our look, to keep up with the competition and the area," she said. "We want an inviting look and this is our moment."

The walls of the McDonald's turned to rubble 31 years to the month it opened and Harges said the new restaurant should open around mid-November in the same place.

An improved drive-through, dining area, wireless Internet access and interactive games for children are some of the improvements for the restaurant.

"People want to be in something that is fresh and inviting and carries the McDonald's brand," she said. "What you're going to see in Prescott is the image that McDonald's is doing all over the world. It's the new look, it's the new way and it's because we want to keep bringing in those people and offering them the best."

Contact the reporter at jsoifer@prescottaz.com

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