The plan for a 14-pump Sheetz in Centerville is now off the table.
Centerville City Council voted unanimously and decided to cancel the project that would have taken over Elsa’s property on Far Hills Avenue.
A local church and groups of community members opposed the gas station going in which would have taken up over 6,000 square feet and have hundreds of cars coming and going.
Since the city council struck down the possible development, community members are excited to see what will be built instead.
“Inside, I was doing my little happy dance,” Epiphany Lutheran Church Senior Pastor Julie Reuning-Scherer said.
Concerns have been high since the summer all because Sheetz was supposed to replace the Mexican restaurant Elsa’s.
“The surrounding properties did not match their 24-hour very high-volume car-oriented business,” Reuning-Scherer said.
“The planning commission’s August 29, 2023 decision should be and hereby is reversed and the applicant’s major site application is denied as it is not consistent with use and character of surrounding properties,” Centerville Mayor Brooks Compton said.
>> Previous Coverage: City planning commission approves plans to build Sheetz in Centerville
Gary Miller is a member of the Epiphany Lutheran Church and he sat in the front row during the council meeting, in an outfit that honored his late wife whom he visits in the church’s memorial garden.
“I put on the complete uniform because it was white that my wife wore when she carried the torch in Dayton for the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics,” Miller said.
Miller is glad that the city council voted to cancel the project, mainly because he won’t hear any loud noises from a gas station next door while visiting his wife at the memorial garden.
“It creates an atmosphere that is just absolutely moving emotionally so that’s what’s important,” Miller said.
Not everyone is happy about the vote, and Sheetz is disappointed with the decision.
“While we are disappointed by the Centerville City Council’s decision, we will continue to look for ways to expand throughout the greater Dayton area with the goal of being a great employer and good neighbor in every community we serve,” Sheetz Public Relations Manager Nick Ruffner said.
Right now, it is unclear what will replace Elsa’s, but Reuning-Scherer is looking forward to the new plan.
She hopes whatever is decided will keep the noise and traffic to a minimum.
“We could use organizations that build up the community, health care, education… We welcome restaurants and the people who go there,” Reuning-Scherer said.
Workers at Elsa’s said they are still open for the foreseeable future until an official plan is set and the property is bought.