Open & Shut: 2-7-2011

Published in CSP Daily News

The where, when and why behind recent station, store openings, closings nationwide

South Carolina

A new Zoomz c-store/gas Station in Lexington opened for business in November, the company told CSP Daily News. It features six gasoline dispensers and it will be branded BP. Customers can choose from a variety of cold beverages, grocery, diary, beer,
wine, healthy and beauty products. Additional services include South Carolina Educational Lottery, ATM, money orders, propane and variety of products.

Tennessee

Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Memphis C-Store LLC has bought a c-store near Memphis from Boonie R. Cranford for $1.7 million, reported The Memphis Daily News. The purchase was financed with a $1.7 million loan through Fidelity Bank that matures in November 2035. The building is a 4,080-sq.-ft. store built in 2006. It sits on 4.7 acres in unincorporated Shelby County. The seller bought the then-vacant property in September 2005 for $275,000, according to sale documents filed with the Shelby County Register of Deeds. The Shelby County Assessor of Property's 2010 appraisal was $757,300.

Although the Henpeck Market, an eatery, gas station and gifts shop in Franklin, closed in late January, said The Tennessean. New owner Carl Moore, who bought the foreclosed property at auction on January 28, promises to keep much of what made the destination popular among tourists and locals. "We plan to keep it exactly as it was as a local landmark. We're not changing that. But we'll make it new and improved," he said. He is planning to reopen the Henpeck Village Market in early March. Improvements include redoing the floors and ceilings, adding a patio and TVs, putting in an old-fashioned ice cream and soda fountain and setting up an in-store pharmacy. The deli station and eatery will remain, but the new owner is considering the addition of a brick oven for pizzas.

Texas

A new Toot N Totum opened in Amarillo in late January, said ConnectAmarillo.com.

Virginia

A closed BP station in Colleen reopened on January 1, said The Nelson County Times. The roadside business has reopened under the new ownership of Sridevi Tiwari and a group of investors who purchased the business and property last August. One whole side of the station store has a new commercial kitchen and full-service deli, with sandwiches and burgers made by local cook, Bobby Jean Henderson of Shipman. "We have a deli over there at the Corner Market gas station and...people...don't want to go into a restaurant and sit down and eat all the time," Tiwari said. "They just want to pack up their food and take it and go. Especially the passing crowd, like truckers." Soon, Tiwari said they will be adding more to their menu and including Mexican special nights. While the gas station carries regular fare, like milk, cigarettes, soda, bread and lottery tickets, Tiwari has also added a small hardware section and ammunition for hunters. "We all need duct tape or little things all the time," she said. "And based on customer needs, if we have a really good amount of customers looking for something, we'll add it."

Campus Exxon in Blacksburg is being remodeled, turning the garage into a 24/7 food store, said The Collegiate Times. John Newton, of PMI Management Services, said the location will be completely rebranded. The station will become a Shell, adding diesel fuel and Kroger's discount program, and the inside will become a Stop In Food Store. "We're going to offer a lot of varieties of food 24 hours a day," he said. The menu will include foods such as breakfast biscuits, sandwiches and wraps, pulled pork sandwiches and salads, as well as coffee, cappuccinos and slushies. He said the store is looking to partner with local businesses to expand its options. It has already made an agreement to sell Carol Lee Donuts, and is seeking a partnership to sell Hokie merchandise. He said the goal is to fill a gap not covered by other restaurants and c-stores. "We're trying to get engaged with the students," he said. "We plan to have events for the students, like a hot dog eating contest." The remodel will also include a walk-in refrigerator, called the Beer Cave, with a variety of beers. The alcohol selection will also include wine and kegs. He said he expected the location to open by mid-March.

Both 7-Elevens in Courtland and the one in Franklin are moving from corporate to individual ownership, said The Tidewater News. Alfran Gary, who is a corporate store manager, will take over the Cortland store on February 17, said 7-Eleven franchise sales manager Ron Bernal. "I've actually sold the other Courtland store, but that probably won't change over until April," he said. Linda Artis, a corporate assistant store manager for 7-Eleven, purchased that store. Nora Ponter purchased the Franklin store, which will change hands in February.

Cloud 9 Convenience LLC is planning to open a drive-thru c-store in Virginia Beach, the company said on Twitter in December. Cloud 9 offers an array of products ranging from everyday food necessities, tobacco products, beer, and ice along with many other products. Cloud 9 eliminates the process of parking, and getting in and out of the car while processing and delivering customer's orders in a fast, efficient method, it said on its website.

Washington

After being open for more than 30 years, a 7-Eleven in Wallingford closed on February 1, said The North Seattle-Herald Outlook. Even though the c-store chain has a strong presence throughout the area, the location was not profitable enough to stay open. "It was low-volume, and the lease was coming up for renewal, so we made a business decision to not renew the lease," said company spokesperson Margaret Chabris.

Please send your store openings and related announcements to Greg Lindenberg at glindenberg@cspnet.com, www.twitter.com/glcspdn or www.facebook.com/glcspdn.

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