Rumors are flying over what business might build at the location of the Bergen Park McDonald’s, Evergreen’s first free-standing fast-food restaurant, which closed Dec. 31.
The most prevalent rumor is that a Chick-fil-A will eventually occupy the spot, though so far the land has not been purchased and plans have not been filed with the Jefferson County Planning and Zoning Department. A Chick-fil-A representative did not return phone calls.
The McDonald’s, which had been open exactly 20 years, closed with little fanfare. The building has already been demolished. Jim Boselli, whose company owns six McDonald’s, including the one near the Evergreen Walmart and one in Idaho Springs, did not return several phone calls about why the restaurant closed.
It took all of 1991 for McDonald’s to get the approvals necessary and to build the Bergen McDonald’s in time for its opening on New Year’s Eve. To appease area residents’ concerns, the McDonald’s did not have a play area and had only 50 seats, about half of the seating that the typical McDonald’s of the time had. McDonald’s also agreed to put redwood siding and shake shingles on the building so it would blend in with surrounding businesses.
The Evergreen North Area Balanced Land Use Effort was instrumental in helping to define the look of the restaurant. The early 1990s were busy in Evergreen as plans moved forward to build the Evergreen Lake House and to expand Evergreen Parkway to four lanes.
ENABLE also garnered community support to keep a Walmart out of Bergen Park.
The McDonald’s closure was a surprise to several Bergen Village merchants. “It was kind of shocking that something that’s been around for that long has gone away,” said Patty Fairbanks, manager of Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt.
She said she hoped the new business on the property, whether a Chick-fil-A or something else, would help bring more people to Bergen Park from I-70, adding to revenue for local businesses.
Kathy Reynolds, owner of Baby Going Green, said she, too, was surprised. She and her children remember when the McDonald’s opened.
Lin Browning, president of the Evergreen Area Chamber of Commerce, said that while she was sad that McDonald’s had closed, she was looking forward to a new business joining in the growth in the Bergen Park area.