Chipotle restaurant set to open at Towson Commons

Chipotle Mexican Grill is readying to open a third Towson-area location.

The chain will open a 2908-square-foot restaurant May 25 at Towson Commons, near the intersection of Pennsylvania Avenue and York Road, in downtown Towson.

The Denver-based burrito chain also has locations at 801 Goucher Blvd. and 6314 York Road, near Rodgers Forge.

"Our Joppa and Rodgers Forge restaurants are so popular with the Towson University students," company spokeswoman Krista Ammirato said. "We thought it was a perfect opportunity to be closer to the campus."

The restaurant prepares food in open kitchens daily, with locally sourced ingredients, according to its website. Customers can customize burritos, salads, tacos and rice bowls with their choice of protein and toppings.

In 2015, the company was plagued by food safety concerns following an outbreak of E. coli at stores in 14 states, including Maryland, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

After a joint investigation with the FDA, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control declared the outbreaks over in February 2016, without finding the source of the illnesses.

Company officials say they have addressed the food safety concerns. The company has refined an eight-step food safety process that includes enhanced food safety training, an electronic tracking system for ingredients and an advisory council, according to its website.

Chipotle joins a two-story LA Fitness, a CVS Pharmacy, the women's clothing store, Boho Nation, and Kyodai Rotating Sushi Bar in a newly renovated space at Towson Commons.

Towson Commons Retail LLC — a venture between Baltimore-based MFI Realty and Bethesda-based Woodmont Properties — bought 115,000 square feet of the Towson Commons building in November 2015. Company officials did not return repeated requests for comment on the planned Chipotle opening.

The new restaurant will employ 37 people, including students, and will seat 59 people indoors and 14 at an outdoor patio, Ammirato said.

The restaurant, at 401 York Road, is scheduled to be open from 10:45 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days per week.

As an opening day promotion, the first 500 customers to purchase an entrée on May 25 will receive free IZZE sparkling drinks.

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