McDonald’s to demolish Des Plaines museum next month

OAK BROOK, Ill. — McDonald’s Corp. has announced it will demolish a suburban Chicago museum that’s a replica of Ray Kroc’s first restaurant.

Kroc is considered by the corporation to be the hamburger chain’s founder. He built his first restaurant in 1955 in Des Plaines after franchising the brand from the original owners, Richard and Maurice McDonald.

The Chicago Tribune reports the store was torn down in 1984. McDonald’s Store No. 1 Museum opened the next year, with the original restaurant’s sign out front.

The site was popular with tourists but repeated flooding forced the museum to bar access in 2008. In a statement, McDonald’s said that caused a tourism decline, and flooding issues made reopening unfeasible.

The company says the museum will be razed next month and the land donated to Des Plaines.