When we reported the story behind the abrupt closure of the Union 76 gas station at 23rd and Union, we were told by the family ownership group it was likely the lot would be reactivated with a new service station tenant and local landowner Ian Eisenberg weighed in with what he had heard on the matter a few months back:
Good news! I talked to the property owner and there is a new operator/tenant moving in and many planned upgrades & improvements.
We can now report the first tangible signs of what Eisenberg was talking about. While we don’t yet know details of a potential new tenant for the space, we have learned that the service station is being prepared for a significant overhaul that will give it enhanced capabilities to provide biofuels to serve the growing demand for alternative fuels in the city. Here are the details of the recent application filed with the city’s Department of Planning and Development to overhaul the site:
Alterations and improvemetns (sic) to an existing fueling station within a NC2-P zone. Request permits to add biofuels (biodiesel and ethanol) to station. Request permits to renovate the deteriorated existing building with no changes to square footage.
From the application, it sounds like in addition to the biofuel upgrades, they’re also filing to do work to renovate the mini-mart portion of the business.
While not the most earth shattering news of the week, it’s welcome news to many that the lot isn’t destined to become an inactive empty lot. We’ll see what we can confirm with the Richlen family about the upgrades and any information about a future tenant.
We’ll see, nothing they have been doing on the ‘upgrade’ seems major so far, it looks like all they’ve done is given it a very poor paint job. I was sort of hoping there would be something interesting happening but perhaps I’m expecting too much from the seemingly unimaginative property owners of 23rd & Union.
Biodiesel would be a great addition for the neighborhood there isn’t much south of the ship canal, but isn’t ethanol going bust?
I am happy to see the activity! An occupied building with any improvements is better than an empty building with tagged walls.
Filling the dip in the cement on the SW corner of the lot was a great start. (That puddle could get quite large on a rainy day. When the clothing drop off bin or the garbage cans were overflowing, it was a serious mess). I haven’t checked out the paint job up close, but it is an improvement over what it was. Hopefully they will stay on top of the south wall that regularly gets tagged.
I am hoping that they will keep the cigarette signs down too. I think it is fair to say that most smokers know that mini marts sell cigarettes…..no need for the unattractive signs. (I would love to see the cigarette posterboards taken off of the post office lot fence too for that matter.
Three cheers for the biodeisel. It looks like they are looking to fill a need in our community.
I have to agree with Olive, not much change to the corner. I go by daily and look to see what’s happening, hopeing to see improvement. On a positive note, the carwash is looking much better. They’ve cleanned it up quite a bit.
One element not well stated is the DPD filing is still in progress and has not yet been approved so work can’t begin until it is. We’ll keep our eyes open for the approval.