Wawa wants propane

There’s gas and now there might be different gas. The two Wawa convenience stores in Concord Township want to sell propane and went before Township Council last night to get conditional use approval.

Per the original conditional use agreement with Concord, Wawa must get updated approval for additional products and services not included in the original use agreement. It had to do that for gasoline sales, and for beer and wine sales at the Naamans Creek Road store. Now Wawa has sought approval to sell AmeriGas Propane from vending machines to be located outside each of the two stores in Concord, Naamans Creek and Route 1. Without the amended approval, the stores would be limited to selling only gasoline outside the store.

Attorney Charles Miller represented Wawa during the Aug. 21 hearing and his only witness was Mike Simone, the director of vending operations for AmeriGas whose product Wawa wants to sell.

Simone testified that propane sales are new for Wawa, but the Wawa store in Chester Heights is already selling it. He also explained some of the safety features of the vending machine racks that would be outside the stores.

He said the machines have space for 24 cylinders, but only 23 would be filled. The empty space is for an empty cylinder that has to be put in before a full tank can be removed.

The machines also have built-in technology that detects leaks and turns on a fan when a leak is detected. It can also email a call center if the leak is heavy. That call center is monitored 24/7 he said, and that “The machine checks in every 30 minutes” on a routine basis.

He added that the machines are inspected every time a driver makes a delivery to them.

Miller said the township Planning Commission had recommended approval and that Wawa would comply with the points in the fire marshal’s review and with all other safety regulations.

Council is expected to vote on the matter during its Sept. 4 meeting. They will also vote on whether to approve a zoning change for 3.8-acre property Maris Grove wants to use as a green space.

Maris Grove is zoned CCRC — Continuous Care Retirement Community — an overlay district. The 3.8- acre piece is zoned C-2 Planned Business and Commercial District.


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