College Township Council at its Sept. 20 meeting approved a request from Sheetz to table its land development plan and grant a 90-day extension for the Shiloh Road Sheetz rebuild.
Sheetz had submitted land development plans to College Township in July that included demolishing the existing 4,700-square-foot convenience store and attached bank and replacing the building with one that is 6,077 square feet. The new Sheetz would have 14 gas pumps.
The development plans estimated that work would begin in the fall and finish in the spring.
But a request from College Township for a traffic count at the store, to determine whether a traffic study might be necessary, could have an impact on the plan going forward.
Brent Brubaker, of Sheetz, said at the meeting that the traffic count had been done but he hadn’t had a chance to digest the data.
“If it’s looking like we’re going to have to do a traffic study and go through the PennDOT process, what I’m probably going to end up doing is probably significantly reduce the scope of the project,” he said.
The proposed 6,077-square-foot store would be the “latest and greatest prototype” and the first of its kind, Brubaker said.
The store would include a drive-thru, more of a “restaurant feel” and a walk-in beer cooler, if Sheetz can get a license for it, he said.
But the project is already at the top end of the budget, and Brubaker said the fear of conducting a traffic study is getting into all kinds of off-site improvements.
Even though the project doesn’t require Sheetz to obtain a highway occupancy permit from PennDOT, the township could still require a traffic study.
Brubaker said there’s a smaller footprint design that Sheetz could build in that location, which would still include a drive-thru — though that wouldn’t be the preference.
Sheetz opened its newest State College location in September 2017 at Colonnade Boulevard, and rebuilt its Valley Vista location last winter.