Archive for Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Contractor working on Casey’s site

May 11, 2005

Demolition is under way on the former Bitler restaurant building, making way for a new Casey's General Store.

Casey's plans to close its existing store at the busy intersection of U.S. Highway 24-40 and Kansas Highway 16 and move it a block north -- to the site of the former Bitler barbecue restaurant on Third Street. The existing building on the new site is now being dismantled. The parking lot must be pulled up, to make way for the new gasoline station and convenience store.

The new location will have more room than the existing site, which is cramped and difficult for motorists to maneuver, according to company officials.

"The scheduled completion date right now is August," said Bill Walljasper, chief financial officer for Casey's, which is based in Ankeny, Iowa. "You'll see a lot more progress now that they've started the demolition."

A 2,500-square-foot building will be constructed, and, outdoors, the new station will include four fueling stations capable of serving eight vehicles at one time. The current building has the capacity to serve four vehicles at one time.

Paulette Courtney, manager of the local store, said the new building will be similar to the Leavenworth Casey's store.

Company officials have said that once a new store is up and running, that the old store will be closed and the buried gasoline tanks will be pulled. The old site will carry a 15-year no-compete provision. That means new owners could not sell anything that would compete with Casey's -- from gasoline to pizza to doughnuts.

"You should see some more progress in the next 30 days, and then it will be going faster and faster," Walljasper said.

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