Mary Brown’s chicken could be up and running in Yellowknife by the end of the year, according to the franchisee.

The restaurant was initially expected to open earlier this year on a piece of land owned by Westown Tire on Old Airport Road, but the date was pushed ahead because of delays with city permits and fire regulations.

Perry Campbell, the restaurant’s sole owner, told The Moose that development is underway, with crews clearing rock and preparing to dig the building’s service lines.

“We’re really aiming to be open in December,” said Campbell. “We still believe we can meet that deadline but dealing with permits can slow things down.”

Campbell has been in talks with the chain for over two years to bring their fried chicken back to the city, after the franchise closed their restaurant in Yellowknife in 2002.

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Mary Brown’s is a Canadian fast-food chain known for its chicken, sandwiches and potato wedges. The company has over 120 locations in Canada.

The restaurant’s entrance was initially planned to be on Old Airport Road, across from Canadian Tire, but fire regulations have forced the entrance to be moved onto Borden Drive.

Crews clear rock from the future Mary Brown's property.

Crews clear rock from the future Mary Brown’s property.

“Originally we were trying to be on Old Airport Road, but due to fire regulations it was difficult putting the building there and get parking,” said Campbell.

After securing a location that could offer a drive-thru option and satisfy regulations, Campbell has been working with city officials.

The project has been given a development permit, but the city has yet to issue a building permit.

Despite the delay, Campbell said he’s confident the franchise will be supported by Yellowknifers.

“They are more than excited to return to Yellowknife,” said Campbell. “We believe there’s a market for Mary Brown’s in Yellowknife.”