GLEN CARON - The newest addition to Glen Carbon is taking shape, with plans for Olive Garden to open in early to mid-October later this year.

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Olive Garden will be located in the new Orchard Town Center development at the intersection of Governor’s Parkway and Troy Road, near the recently-opened Chick-Fil-A.

Construction is by St. Louis-based J.E. Foster Building Company. Jobsite superintendent Dan Backer said the construction is “going good.”

The Staenberg Group, a real estate firm in Overland, Missouri, is leasing spots in the Orchard Town Center. They say that the development will be a new shopping center. Anyone who is interested in leasing information can call 314-513-1500.

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As temperatures climbed Wednesday, construction workers could be found resting in the shade, enjoying meals from Chick-Fil-A during their lunch break.

The Olive Garden started as a unit of General Mills. The Olive Garden's first restaurant was opened on December 13, 1982, in Orlando. By 1989, there were 145 restaurants. The Olive Garden restaurants made it the fastest-growing unit in the General Mills restaurant division. The Olive Garden restaurants were uniformly popular, and the chain's per-store sales soon matched former sister company Red Lobster.

Olive Garden's original slogan was "Good Times, Great Salad, Olive Garden." This was used when their main advertising focus was unlimited salad. When unlimited soup and breadsticks were added to the menu, the slogan was changed to "When you're here, you're family." The slogan changed again in early 2013 to "We're all family here."

With more than 850 restaurants nationwide, Olive Garden recognizes its unique position to help provide hunger relief in the local communities they serve. In 2003, Olive Garden created the Harvest program, where all restaurants gather wholesome, surplus food every day and carefully prepare for a weekly donation to a local non-profit organization.

Olive Garden restaurants have donated over 40 million pounds of food, and they also partner with Feeding America® to help children and families facing hunger in communities.

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