By: Michael Campbell | Twitter: @itsthesoup
Posted: Dec. 8, 2017 | 4:15 p.m.
PRINCE GEORGE – In the battle for convenience store supremacy, chains Sheetz and Wawa have both been frontrunners in the region with their own loyal base of shoppers at their locations surrounding Prince George and now, Sheetz is looking to grow their footprint with a new location along Temple Avenue near Puddledock Road in the county.
According to county documents, Sheetz is planning to build a full-service convenience store near the intersection of Temple Avenue and Puddledock Road. The specific location would see the roadway the runs in front of Colonial Harley Davison, Temple Parkway, lead into the Sheetz location and feature a right-in-right-out, or RIRO road connection from the store onto Temple Avenue. That connection was approved by the Commonwealth Transportation Board earlier this year.
There will also be a connection to Puddledock Road at its intersection with Waterside Road, across from the Lowe’s home improvement store in the area.
Those county documents reveal that the site would feature a traditional Sheetz “convenience store, restaurant, drive thru, fuel sales, and car wash.”
As a result of Sheetz’ plans to feature a car wash facility on the property, the company had to file an application for special exception related specifically to car wash use. According to Prince George Deputy County Administrator Jeff Stoke, the car wash facility was the sole reason for the application by Sheetz, with a public hearing on the subject scheduled for December 12 at 7:30 p.m. at the county administration building. He added that the land where the store is slated to be located is already zoned B-1 for commercial businesses and, per the county code, the special exception for the car wash component of the store is needed due to the volume of water that would be involved in such a venture.
In their supporting documents for the application, Sheetz says it uses “an engineered below grade Retention Interceptor Reclaim Tanking and Plumbing design with an above grade water recovery filtration system” in all its car wash locations to “effectively reduce the fresh water usage as well as providing a cleaner effluent to the municipality.”
“The PurWater Recovery system is engineered specifically for the professional vehicle washing industry,” a case summary from Prince George staff reads. “The system is designed to operate 24/7 to capture, filter and reuse water from the washing process of automatic car wash systems.”
The Prince George Planning Commission and county staff has made the recommendation to the Prince George Board of Supervisors to approve the car wash based on the information presented. A decision will be made by supervisors following Tuesday’s public hearing.
A Sheetz in Prince George would be the second such convenience store chain to decide to set up shop in the county in the past year as Love’s Travel Stops is currently in the process of building a new location and fueling center along U.S. Route 460 at the intersection of Prince George Drive near the county’s Central Wellness Center.
In addition, this proposed Sheetz would only be one mile from a Wawa store that is located at the intersection of Temple Avenue and Charles Dimmock Parkway and roughly a mile-and-a-half from another Sheetz store along Conduit Road, both in neighboring Colonial Heights. That store is currently closed for renovations.
Along with the planned Prince George development, Sheetz has recently opened a store along Wagner Road in Petersburg, just about two miles outside of the county’s western border.
Sheetz operates more than 500 stores and employs over 17,000 people.