Rutters gas station has recently opened, presenting a third gas station available on Woodsboro Pike. With development in Walkersville going through the roof, this won’t be the end of it. The Frederick County Planning Commission approved the plans for a 7-Eleven gas station to be added along that road.
The 7-Eleven will be located in front of Discovery, near the Goodwill, taking the place of an old car wash. It has already become controversial within the community, providing many pros and cons.
In support of the new gas station, many argue that the 7-Eleven would be providing more opportunities, safety, competition, and productivity. Having the 7-Eleven in that specific location would provide jobs, especially for teenagers living in the nearby neighborhood.
In addition, the location would allow people to have gas and food options without having to cross the dangerous and busy street of Woodsboro Pike to get to Sheetz. Junior Amelia Olsen disagreed stating, “I really don’t think it’s that difficult to get across the crosswalk.”
But, the 7-Eleven would present more competition for Walkersville and local gas stations. Competition can be healthy within communities providing regulated/lower prices, efficient work, and better quality.
Finally, the gas station would be more productive than the current “run down” car wash. According to a county staff report for the project, “The 7-Eleven will generate an expected 122 morning and 148 evening weekday peak hour trips, an increase of 43 more morning trips and 20 evening trips than the current carwash and other traffic” .
But those opposed to the new 7-Eleven have said that it will create excess traffic, making the area more dangerous. “It’s going to make more traffic, and with the more cars, the 7-Eleven is actually going to be more unsafe, and it’s a really small space,” junior Alexis Andrews added.
People also argue that having a fourth gas station would present too much competition for the area, maybe eventually leading a gas station to close. “I work at Rutters… They are going to take business away from my job,” Andrews remarked. “Well at this rate, Circle K is going to close, and that’s lost jobs and then, three other gas stations, one’s going to give out, and I think it’s going to be the 7-Eleven. I think it’s stupid. It’s going to be open for a year, and then it’s going to close down. There’s too much competition,” Olsen stated.
Finally, people are saying that the 7-Eleven is just plain unnecessary. With all of the various pros and cons, some are stating that this new gas station is just not needed, especially in a small town like Walkersville that already has other options.
“We don’t need four gas stations in Walkersville, it’s too small,” commented junior Merideth Byers.
“We don’t need anymore gas stations this is ridiculous. If they are building another building I would prefer for it not to be another gas station,” senior Mikayla Marchasani remarked.
With the 7-Eleven approved for construction, there will be a total of four gas stations on Woodsboro Pike. Whether people agree, or disagree with it, the community better prepare for 7-Eleven and their slushies!
Citations: https://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/politics_and_government/planning/eleven-store-approved-for-discovery-neighborhood/article_4e944803-6093-53b6-af0d-2829b4316de3.html https://ago.mo.gov/civil-division/consumer/antitrust-laws/the-importance-of-competition
Photo from Hannah Benson.