McDonald’s UK is reportedly set to transfer its focus for opening high street locations to further expand its drive-thru estate. Henry Trickie, the fast food chain’s vice-president of development told Property Week that the company believed the high street market on which it has c350 sites was saturated and that was now seeking sites for up to 300 new drive-thru outlets instead. It currently has 750 drive-thru restaurants in the UK and is seeking for sites to house 4,000sq ft units. He said: “Our plan is to open drive-through outlets pretty much exclusively. We already have strong coverage across most shopping centres and high streets, so there is little opportunity for us there. We are looking for a mix of sites, both in large markets where we already have one or two drive-thus, and in smaller towns where we are not yet represented in this format. “We have no particular timeframe for this expansion. Drive-throughs take, on average, two to three years to open, as you have to go through the planning process. We want the best sites and the best locations, and that takes time.” According to Property Week McDonald’s is already on target to open 15 in the next year and plans to open a further 25 drive-thrus in 2013 and then 30 each year from 2014.