Controversial opening of first McDonald’s

A McDonald’s sign transformed by artist Zevs in 2005 in Paris (illustration). – ZEVS

A restaurant McDonald’s, the first on the island of oléron, opened on Thursday morning after five years of fighting with an environmental mayor, who opposed the settlement for security reasons. According to the mayor, this victory for the American brand does not mark the end of the legal battle.

Opening without advertising

The fast food brand has opened on a commercial area of ​​Dolus d’Oleron (Charente-Maritime), under the watchful eye of a few security guards and without advertising. It was originally scheduled to open before summer, but management had delayed the event. In December 2018, the town hall issued the building permit for the restaurant, ordered by the Poitiers administrative court and then the Bordeaux administrative court of appeal.

For years, the environmental mayor Grégory Gendre, former member of Greenpeace, opposed the project, issuing building permit refusal orders, citing in particular an “accident-causing” risk due to insufficient road access to the restaurant. The town hall has appealed to the Court of Cassation, and the Council of State “will have to judge whether or not access to the restaurant is accident-prone while the population of the island quintuple in summer,” said Maître Julien Marceau, lawyer for the town hall.

Another complaint from two residents

According to the mayor, added to the road risk is a “hydraulic risk”, the restaurant being installed on a site which has experienced several floods since the summer, “due to the artificialisation of the soil, of a water network rain that saturates ”. He agrees that this is not only due to McDonald’s, but the restaurant he says is building a parking extension that will make the problem worse. He said he intends to sue the company for extension without authorization. In addition, two residents have also brought legal action, finding the restaurant not compatible with the town planning code of the island of Oléron.

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