Friday, March 29, 2024

[EXCLUSIVE] Forget Buc-ee's, Wawa Bringing its Fuel and Food to Even More Georgia Communities

ToNeTo Atlanta has identified yet another upcoming Georgia location for Wawa, the popular chain of convenience stores and gas stations.  Planning documents reviewed by ToNeTo Atlanta indicate a new Wawa is planned for 4589 North Valdosta Road in Valdosta in Lowndes County. 

The new location, identified as store #6308, would be 5,537 square feet and occupy a 2.35 acre property.  The Valdosta Wawa is at least the ninth location planned for southern and coastal Georgia in the coming years.

The Pennsylvania-based chain first announced its intentions to enter the Georgia market in October 2022.   On March 7, the company broke ground on its first two Georgia locations - 4344 Community Road in Brunswick and 356 West Orange Street in Jesup - both of which are expected to open late this year.  The company plans to on May 1 break ground on their next pair of Georgia locations in Hinesville and Pooler.     

"Wawa continues to build a pipeline of sites in southern and Coastal Georgia and currently has sites under contract in Brunswick, Jesup, Hinesville, Pooler, Waycross, Bainbridge, Tifton, Valdosta, and Albany," the company stated in a release at the time of the initial Georgia groundbreaking.     The company plans to open at least 26 stores in southern and Coastal Georgia over the next five to eight years, opening three to four stores per year.

The following locations are where planning materials or company announcements suggest Wawa intends to build Georgia units:

1810 S. Georgia Parkway W, Waycross - 5,537 square feet on 2.29 acres - #6300

774 Elma G Miles Parkway, Hinesville - 6,119 square feet on 2.54 acres - #6301

769 E. Oglethorpe Highway, Hinesville - 6,119 square feet on 1.91 acres - #6302

4344 Community Road, Brunswick - 5,537 square feet on 2 acres - #6303

1401 Tallahassee Highway, Bainbridge - 6,119 square feet on 3.1 acres - #6304 

274 First Street, Jesup - 6,119 square feet on 1.86 acres  #6307

Pine Barren Road & Pooler Parkway, Pooler - 6,119 square feet on 2.27 acres 

356 West Orange Street, Jesup on 1.89 acres 

4589 North Valdosta Road, Valdosta - 5,537 square feet on 2.35 acres - #6308

Each of the planned locations is slated to have 16 fueling stations.  

By these metrics, these new Wawa locations would be comparable in size and fuel offerings to that of a typical RaceTrac or QuikTrip.  What separates Wawa from its peers, however, is its selection of food, not just snacks and stuff, but actual food.   

Wawa, a pioneer in convenience store food offerings, features a robust selection of made-to-order meals including breakfast, lunch, and dinner selections. The chain, based in Wawa, Pennsylvania in Greater Philadelphia, is perhaps most known for their hoagies, but also offers cheesesteaks, deli sandwiches, salads, bowls, and breakfast burritos, among other options.    

In their release in October 2022, Wawa indicated their entrance into Georgia will, as our research suggests, be centered on south and coastal Georgia with no metro Atlanta units yet. The company in 2022 also announced plans to expand into the Florida Panhandle and south Alabama in 2024, Nashville in 2025, and Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky "sometime after 2025."   More recently, however, the company suggested that Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky openings could begin as soon as mid-2025.   

C-Store Dive, an industry trade publication, mapped out in October Wawa's seven state growth that it sees propelling it to 1,800 locations by 2030.  

In Florida, a market Wawa entered in July 2012 with a location in Orlando near SeaWorld, the company opened more than a dozen locations in 2023 including one in St. Petersburg that marked its 250th in the state!  In April 2023 Wawa celebrated the opening of its 1,000th overall store in south Jersey.

The chain, which traces its roots to 1803, currently operates more than 1,040 locations.     

Have you ever been to a Wawa?  What convenience store do you think offers the best food?  Where else in Georgia would you like to see Wawa open?  

Please share your thoughts below.


Anonymous said...

Wish they’d open one anywhere within an hour of Atlanta!

Anonymous said...

Grew up in Delaware and also vacation there so been to Wawa many times. They definitely have great food!! Wish they would come to Atlanta but not sure that's realistic. I appreciate QT & Racetrack though. Always buy gas at QT & Racetrack has great coffee!!

Anonymous said...

Been to countless Wawa’s. They have great sandwiches you can eat almost daily. Cheap gas and great coffee - including espresso drinks. They own a dairy so their ice cream, milk, and so on is really good too!

Anonymous said...

Wish they would work their way up I75 from Valdosta. It would make the horrible drive to FL so much better.

Anonymous said...

There are hardly any RaceTracs around Atlanta. I can only think of 3 locations, 2 of which are OTP. If RaceTrac can't successfully do business here, I think Wawa and Bucee's are wise to stay away.

Anonymous said...

^^Is that an April Fools comment? There are Racetrac's all over Atlanta including ITP. They are headquarted in the Cumberland district by the Battery.

Anonymous said...

Would a RaceTrac ITP even make any sense with land so hard to find? There have to be at least 25 of them in metro Atlanta. e.g. 5 county

Anonymous said...

Please please come to Atlanta. Our incumbent chains have completely dropped the ball. People here think QT is fine only because they've never been to Wawa or even a Sheetz. Either one of them would make QT and RaceTrac look like a joke and run them both out of town. Atlanta residents are scoffing. QT has a kitchen, right? RT makes pizza, right? Hah! Absolutely trash compared to Wawa. Not even food compared to what Wawa makes.

Anonymous said...

They DO have several ITP. One on Clairmont near PDK, one on loop road and another one on Camp Creek both near Hartsfield Jackson. And I think one on Northside drive, near GA Tech. They're not GOOD but they do exist. There was one downtown near Georgia State but they literally just abandoned it because of the crime, murders, etc.

Anonymous said...

I live in Buckhead and the closest one to me is over on Marietta Blvd, and I sure as heck am not driving over there. But then QT only has a slightly higher presence, and the one on Sidney Marcus is way too sketchy to patronize. BTW, my wife works for RT.

Anonymous said...

Maybe we need to give them time to build their own WAWA SWAT units… then they can go full steam into the heart of Atlanta

Anonymous said...

Every Sheetz I ever went in had shit in the urinals.

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