Petition calls for Maple Grove to reverse its decision blocking Portillo's from opening

Some Twin Cities residents weren't happy with Maple Grove's decision to block Portillo's attempt to open its second Minnesota location.

The decision by Maple Grove to block sandwich and hot dog chain Portillo's from opening in the city has not gone down well with some Twin Cities residents.

A petition launched this week on asks the city council to reverse its stance on the famous Chicago institution after it voted 3-2 last week to block the chain's bid to open across the street from The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes.

The main objection was that with a parking lot and Elm Creek Boulevard North separating the proposed Portillo's from The Shoppes, it was deemed too far away to bring a meaningful increase in foot traffic to the mall, which has seen several stores close in recent years.

Adam Wells of St. Paul started the "Let Portillo's Bring Us The Hot Dogs We Deserve" petition, arguing the Chicago chain is a destination restaurant that would bring people from out of town to visit.

Since he's from St. Paul, he won't have to worry too much about driving too far to get to a Portillo's. The chain's first restaurant in Minnesota is set to open not far away, in Woodbury, this summer.

But he works in Maple Grove and told GoMN why he was inspired to start the petition.

"To know I was one vote away from getting Portillo's for lunch at work on a regular basis, that just infuriated me," he said. "I love Portillo's. Anytime I go to Chicago or the Los Angeles area, I make it a priority to stop there at least once. Its filling as well as great tasting food."

"I was aware of the location in Woodbury opening in July, and I plan on going to the location many times after it opens, but since this was close to where I work, I had to do something," he added.

Maple Grove was due to be Portillo's second Minnesota location, but unless there's a change of heart from the council it'll have to look elsewhere.

A denial order is expected to be put before council members to confirm the decision to prevent Portillo's opening in Maple Grove. The meeting will be held on April 17.

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