Wawa hosted a community open house at the Lady Lake Log Cabin on Wednesday to try to gather support for their newest location at County Road 466 and U.S. Hwy. 27/441.
Dozens of members of the community as well as members of the Lady Lake Area Chamber of Commerce attended the open house for an introduction to the new gas station, its products, and a few of its employees.
The proposed location will feature a property over 6,000 square feet, two entry points on S. Old Dixie Avenue, and one entry point on U.S. Highway 27/441.
There will be approximately 45 parking spaces on the property. The developers have indicated that three large oaks will remain on the property.
“We are excited to welcome Wawa into the community and as a new member of the Lady Lake Area Chamber of Commerce,” said Sue Kelly, Director of the Lady Lake Area Chamber of Commerce.
“They have a reputation for high integrity, community involvement and as a employee owned company, they traditionally start all employees above minimum wage and offer great benefits,” added Kelly.
During April’s Lady Lake Commission meeting, commissioners split a poll 3 to 2 in favor of approving the property.
Commissioner Tony Holden argued that the space was not large enough to accommodate the facility adequately, despite the site plan suggesting otherwise.
Commissioner Paul Hannan suggested that the new gas station would demolish a local landmark in “The Castle,” the building that houses Affordable Lock & Security Solutions and currently sits at the intersection of CR 466 and US Hwy 27.
“I personally don’t think the town of Lady Lake needs a gas station in this location. Do we really need another gas station?” Hannan asked.
Lake County Economic Development coordinator Sam Weekley estimates the facility will bring millions of dollars in business and more than $100,000 in property taxes.
Wawa officials say this particular Lady Lake location would create 35 to 40 jobs that would pay above minimum wage.
The company also has plans to build two additional locations in the area.
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