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updated: 11/27/2012 11:21 PM

Rolling Meadows icon faces demolition

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Gino's East, a Rolling Meadows icon for more than a quarter century, will be moving, the building demolished and replaced with a new Panera Bread.

The restaurant at 1321 Golf Road is near Golf and Algonquin roads in the Meadows Crossing Shopping Center, anchored by Meijer.

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Mayor Tom Rooney remembers bringing his late wife, Colleen, to Gino's when they were dating, and said that had to be 1988, just four years after the restaurant opened.

And many others who grew up, live or work in the Northwest suburbs will have stories of the restaurant known as much for the graffiti on the walls as for its deep-dish pizza.

Gino's owners are looking for a smaller, more efficient space, said Valerie Dehner, the city's community development director.

"We are working to keep them in Rolling Meadows, it's an icon," Dehner said.

The new Panera will have a drive through lane long enough for 11 vehicles as well as outdoor seating for 25, according to plans approved earlier this month by the city's Plan Commission.

No comment about the plans was made at Tuesday's city council meeting, but aldermen voted to move an ordinance approving them to the Dec. 4 agenda for final approval.

Many of the conditions in the city's proposed ordinance deal with improving pedestrian safety near the restaurant and elsewhere in the center.

In fact, two traffic studies will be required during the first year the restaurant is open in case further safeguards are needed for pedestrians and drivers.

No timetable for the project was presented at Tuesday's city council meeting.

A Panera nearby on Algonquin Road in Arlington Heights closed in May.

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