shoppers may soon be able to add fuel to fuel to their "ingredients for
life" shopping list.
The supermarket chain last month submitted an application to the city for what would be one of Petaluma's most expansive fueling stations, the report said.
The plans call for an expansive 6,000-square-foot covered 16-pump fuel station and an adjacent 1,000-square-foot convenience store, the report said.
The proposal faces opposition from local gas stations and regulatory hurdles, the report said. Concerns about added traffic in the already congested area are cited, too.
Safeway's entry into the gas business follows a move competitors such as Costco, Albertsons, and Nob Hill Foods have already made.
But not everybody's happy about the idea.
Dan Lutz, who owns a Petaluma Chevron Station, told the
Press Democrat that Safeway doesn't play fair.
“As long as they were going to be competitive, go ahead and do it,” Lutz said. “But they’re not trying to sell gas; they’re trying to sell groceries by giving away a lollipop to get people in the store. There not trying to be competitive with anyone else in town, they’re trying to undercut people.”
Safeway spokeswoman Wendy Gutshall told the Press Democrat in an email that her company operates more than 400 fuel stations in the United States.
"And where there’s an opportunity and space to offer our customers a fuel center, we explore the option,” Gutshall said.
City officials will analyze the potential impact on traffic patterns before granting Safeway a permit to operate a fuel station, City Manager John Brown told the Press Democrat.
“Staff has been looking at this pretty hard,” he said. “The traffic analysis would have to show a good result for this to move forward.”
Would you like to see Safeway open a fuel station at its Washington Square Shopping Center store? Share your thoughts in our comments section.