A North Kildonan man is upset about Superstore’s plans to install a gas bar at its Gateway Road location.
Roger Demelo is concerned the gas bar, to be located at the south side of the property at 1035 Gateway Rd., will negatively affect local residents because it will take away parking spots at the site. Superstore’s plans on the public record note there will be 367 spots on the site, down from 424 between the grocery store and the former Domo gas bar that was located on the property.
Demelo said his 89-year-old father, John, lives on Concordia Avenue and prefers to shop at the Gateway Superstore as opposed to the Regent Avenue West location. Demelo said his father shops at the store on a daily basis.
However, he’s concerned about what will happen during the store’s high-traffic times, especially in winter. In addition to slippery conditions, he noted there will be some spots taken up during the snow-removal process.
"I know how busy it gets in there, especially around certain holiday times like Thanksgiving, Christmas," Demelo, a former Superstore employee at the Gateway location, said. "When you start taking away more parking for a gas bar, you start running into issues with parking."
Demelo fears people like his father will be forced to park on Tu Pelo Avenue, especially during high-traffic times.
"I’ve lived here for 37 years. I know the demographics of the area. There are a lot of seniors in that area, and there’s a fair amount of seniors who shop, and there are only a certain amount of handicapped parking spots (five, up from four, according to Superstore’s plans)," Demelo said. "They’re going to be forced to park further and further away because you’re taking away a good chunk of the parking spots."
Company spokesperson Kim Lee said the company has considered its customers when planning the new gas bar.
"Community and customer safety, as well as ensuring a positive experience all play a critical role in our analysis and decision-making," Lee said in an email. "Plans for the new gas bar will not require any changes to access points or the flow of traffic in or out of the parking lot. In addition, our plans include landscaping with new greenery to this corner."
Demelo wondered whether the former Esso site at the northeast corner of Gateway Road and McLeod Avenue would have been a better site for the gas bar. Lee declined to comment about any company connection to the site.