Representatives of Wawa detailed their plans for a new store to be located at the intersection of U.S. Hwy. 27/441 and County Road 466 in Lady Lake.
Wawa officials offered a conceptual presentation Monday evening to the Lady Lake Commission. They pointed out they are proceeding with plans for a new Wawa at County Road 466 and U.S. 301 in Oxford.
They also revealed they are looking to add a third Wawa in this market on U.S. Hwy. 441 near Lowe’s in Sumter County.
There are already 110 Wawas in Florida and the company wants to aggressively add more.
Wawa officials said the Lady Lake location would create 35 to 40 jobs that would pay above minimum wage.
A Wawa official said that 30,000 cars per day are currently moving through the location where the Wawa would be built. He said the roadways at the proposed location were engineered to accommodate up to 75,000 cars per day.
Two commissioners made it clear they were not excited about Wawa’s desire to build at that location.
“It is like trying to stick a size 12 foot into a size 8 shoe,” said Commissioner Tony Holden.
He said there are other locations in Lady Lake that would be better suited for Wawa.
Commissioner Paul Hannan said Wawa, as famous for the food it sells as for the gasoline pumped at its locations, could hurt mom-and-pop businesses nearby.
Affordable Lock & Security Solutions, the building known as “The Castle,” would be one of four businesses that would be demolished to make room for Wawa.
Hannan said it would be a shame to see the landmark go.
“I personally don’t think the town of Lady Lake needs a gas station in this location. Do we really need another gas station?” asked Commissioner Paul Hannan.
Mayor Jim Richards polled the commission about the possibility of moving ahead with the Wawa project. He and Commissioners Ruth Kussard and Dan Vincent favor the project moving ahead. Hannan and Holden indicated they are against the project.