Pupils position phantom site

It appears the case of the phantom fast food outlet is closed.

Schoolwork seems to be the reason behind the appearance of a potential site for McDonald’s in Wanaka on  internet mapping service Google Maps.

Even the slight possibility of the fast food giant moving into the town was enough to ruffle a few locals.

But it was not Ronald McDonald scanning a map of Wanaka for the best location to sell burgers and  fries, but rather a year 11 class from Mt Aspiring College.

The school’s head of geography, Brendon Robertson, said the commotion was possibly caused by his year 11 geography class. As part of their geography course, the NCEA level one  pupils were researching the most accessible location for a McDonald’s restaurant in Wanaka, for an assignment.

Any confusion caused was not planned,  Mr Robertson said. There was no link to McDonald’s or any business.  The location is still marked on the mapping service and has attracted four reviews, all of which were negative. One comment left on the mark simply says "no".

Wanaka has a history of  opposition to any fast food franchise moving into the town.

A spokesman for McDonald’s said the company had no plans to open in Wanaka and had not identified anywhere as a potential site.

Anyone with an account is able to edit or mark a location on Google Maps. A Google spokesman said  users who found inaccurate information were able report the issue to Google using the "report a problem" tool found on the map itself.

tim.miller@odt.co.nz

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