Casey’s hopes to open location in Baldwin City, as convenience store chain expands Douglas County footprint
photo by: AP File Photo
Baldwin City will have a second convenience store if Casey’s General Store follows up on informal plans it shared with the city.
Ed Courton, Baldwin City community development director, said Casey’s hasn’t yet filed the required plans or paperwork with the city, but officials with the Des Moines, Iowa-based convenience store chain did present an informal sketch of a store it is looking to build on the south frontage to the 500 block of Ames Street. The sketch indicates Casey’s plans to build a 4,000-square-foot store on the half square block that is now home to the car wash at 501 Ames St. and the commercially zoned house at 519 Ames St.
The site is on the key intersection of U.S. Highway 56 and County Road 1055, which is the community’s most direct route to Lawrence. The Baldwin City Kwik Shop convenience store is directly across U.S. 56 to the north.
Courton said Casey’s does not yet own the properties but has locked up options to buy them from Jeff Flory, owner of the car wash, and Jeremy Rodrock, owner of the neighboring house to the west. Flory confirmed such an arrangement with Casey’s at the July 7 Baldwin City Council meeting, when he also expressed interest in a city-owned lot four blocks to the east on U.S. 56 as a site to relocate his car wash.
Casey’s is now working with the Kansas Department of Transportation on a traffic plan detailing access on and off U.S. 56 to the proposed store, Courton said. Once that traffic plan is in place, Casey’s will then have to submit a formal site plan for the Baldwin City Planning Commission’s consideration before construction can start.
Meanwhile, two business owners in the 519 Ames St. building are making moving plans. Caroline Yardley, owner of 133 Coffee, said she and Mendy Brown Gilliland, owner of the Studio One-Eighty salon, will relocate their businesses across the alley to a bungalow at 112 Sixth St. The two businesses had originally planned to move last month, but KDOT’s review of Casey’s traffic plan gave them more time, Yardley said, and she now plans to open at the new location on Sept. 1.
Christy Carlisle has moved her In Full Bloom flower shop out of the 519 Ames St. building but continues to offer service to Baldwin City from her Gardner location.
The Baldwin City store is part of a growing Casey’s footprint in Douglas County. In March, Casey’s filed plans to build a new store at 31st Street and Nieder Road in Lawrence, which is at the entry to the Target store on south Iowa Street. It will be the second Lawrence Casey’s after a store was built at 1703 W. Sixth St. Casey’s also plans to replace its store in Eudora with a larger facility at 14th and Church streets, in the Nottingham redevelopment district the city is pursuing on the site of the old Nottingham Elementary School property, which abuts the community’s main entrance off Kansas Highway 10.