Sandra K. Helton
Delaware City Council is considering plans to demolish the Speedway on West Central Avenue to pave the way for a bigger and better station.
The new site, near Georgetown Shopping Center and across from Grady Memorial Hospital, is expected to offer more food and alleviate traffic congestion. The plan also includes decreasing the number of pumps from six to five and creating 19 distinct parking spaces from what now has only a few formal slots.
Owner Scott Weber said that if the permit process goes as planned, the reconstruction will take no more than 90 days. His intention is to begin demolition of the 27-year-old building late this year and reopen around Dec. 10.
The greater demand for food was a “big push” in creating the new design, Weber said. The proposed building will accommodate that demand by adding 300 square feet to what is now a 3,700-square-foot building.
The proposed traffic changes also “would be a significant improvement on the existing conditions,” according to the city’s planning commission and staff report.
For example, the number of “curb cut” ramped access points would decrease from four to two. The remaining two would be the ones furthest from the West Central Avenue/Troy Road intersection, making the traffic flow as safe, efficient and predictable as possible, city planning director Dave Efland said.
Also, a new stub access road would provide a direct route to the shopping center. This provides motorists an alternative to backing up into the main roads and prevents the blockage of access points. The latter, Efland said, is especially important for vehicles crossing a lane of oncoming traffic to enter the gas station.
The orientation of the new building is to be the same, but the structure is to be closer to the rear property line to allow for a larger and safer traffic circulation area. The adjustment would also provide for storefront parking.
The 19 parking spaces proposed are more than what is required and will end the “haphazard parking” that is currently practiced, Efland said.
New, upgraded sidewalks would also be installed, according to the proposal.
The renovations will create construction jobs before creating a more aesthetic, more functional and safer building, Efland said.
“Speedway choosing to put their money into our community and this store demonstrates our strong market and desire to be here at that location serving the public for years to come,” he said.
The next public hearing on this topic is scheduled for the next city council meeting at 7 p.m. May 14 at City Hall, 1 S. Sandusky St.
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