Wawa plans move forward. County staff detail what’s happening

Published 7:17 am Thursday, September 28, 2023

One thing we continue to get questions about, through email and phone calls, is the planned Wawa going up in Prince Edward County. Residents want to know when they’ll start seeing construction start. 

The answer, county officials say, is soon. Wawa is one step closer to completion after receiving two approvals needed for the building permit. Ever since the Prince Edward County Board of Supervisors approved the Wawa location at Commerce Road and Highway 15, or Farmville Road, residents have been patiently waiting for the convenience store to open. 

One step that needed to take place before Wawa could get a building permit was a full traffic impact analysis of the intersection by the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT). This study looked at the intersection at the store which includes Commerce Road, Highway 15 and Zion Hill Road. This road is known to get backed up in the mornings during the school year, which is one of the many impacts taken into consideration. This traffic impact analysis is now complete and VDOT has given approval with the request that they adjust the signal timing once the location is open. 

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Another step completed was getting the General VPDES Permit for Discharges of Stormwater from Construction Activities from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). This is a general permit that covers the 4.76-acre site and covers discharges of stormwater from construction. In other words, this makes sure that rain or any other water is taken care of without causing flooding or a negative impact on the environment.

“This is the last step in the approval process other than the building permit itself,” said Robert Love, Prince Edward County’s planning and zoning administrator.

Wawa moves forward 

According to Love, there are only a few steps left before construction finally starts. The main step is getting the building permit. Obtaining the building permit is a fairly quick process once everything is in order. On the local side of things, the process will take a few weeks to get the permit and construction going, hopefully within 30 days. Opening day is still a little further away as construction usually takes around six months for the store. 

“Posting of a performance bond prior to grading of soil, which covers construction costs associated with Stormwater/Erosion and Sediment Control activities, and filing of an application and approval of the building permit are the final steps in order for full construction to commence,” said Love. 

Details about the store

Once construction is complete and the store is open, the convenience store will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is expected to employ around 50 employees to run the store and fuel station.

The gas station will have eight gas pumps with the potential of adding charging stations for electric cars in the future, which was a requirement placed by the county planning commission. The store is expected to be a 6,000-square-foot store with eight gas pumps on the property.