BEER AT WAWA
Wawa gets OK to sell beer at Concord store
“We currently view this as a singlestore, product expansion and at this point we have no specific plans to expand this further.” — Wawa statement
CONCORD » Wawa has gotten state approval to start selling six packs – at one of their locations, anyway.
On Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board approved Wawa’s restaurant liquor license at its store at Naamans Creek Road and Route 202.
This was the final governmental approval needed to allow Wawa to begin selling 192 ounces, or two six packs at a time, of malted brewed beverages.
“We’re thrilled to say that our license has been approved to sell beer in our Concordville Wawa store pending completion of the necessary modifications to the store that comply with the use of a restaurant license,” said Lori Bruce Wawa public relations manager, in a company statement.
As part of its agreement with Concord Township, certain modifications, such as construction of a separate area for the sale and consumption of alcohol aside from the rest of the convenience store, needs to be met before beer can begin to be sold there.
However, the Wawa statement said that modifications are anticipated to begin this fall with a project completion date set for January.
“The unique space available at this store enables us to add seating and have a designated food service area,” it continued.
This project been in the works for almost a year and a half, when Wawa approached Concord Township for conditionaluse approval to sell beer at this location. Company officials have indicated they don’t intend to sell wine, as some supermarkets with similar restaurant licenses have started doing.
At the time, they simultaneously planned to transfer a restaurant liquor license from the closed Jimmy D’s in Folcroft for the Naamans Creek Road store.
In 2015, Concord township supervisors voted to allow Wawa to sell beer at the Naamans Creek Road store with certain conditions. Wawa appealed that in Delaware County Common Pleas Court, where changes were negotiated.
Some of the stipulations included requiring beer to be purchased before it’s consumed and restricting on-site consumption to one bottle or can per day for each customer in the cafe.
In addition, Wawa was instructed to design and construct a separate area in the store solely for beer sales and drinking, including a cooler, seating for 30 and a dedicated register. This area will be identified through signage and a 4-foot-high wall dividing this area from the remainder of the store.
PLCB spokeswoman Elizabeth Brassell said the approved license includes the sale of in-person consumption of beer, wine and liquor, although Wawa officials have maintained they are only interested in selling beer at this time.
Brassell said it was solely up to the licensee, after approval, what they would sell as far as beer, wine or liquor for cafe patrons.
However, Wawa would be limited to selling 192 ounces, or the equivalent of two six packs, for takeout.
The location at Naamans Creek Road is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and also sells gasoline.
PLCB officials said restaurant licenses allow facilities to sell malted brewed beverages on premises from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m., although Wawa had agreed to a
Based on its initial township approval, beer sales would be permitted here from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
This would be the second time a Wawa in Pennsylvania has sold beer although alcohol is available at its Virginia and Florida locations.
Wawa previously sold beer at its 38th and Spruce streets store in Philadelphia on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. There, it was sold from 1998 until 2001 when their license was not renewed because of a citation record of sales to minors.
Company officials have maintained that the Concord license is unique and there is no anticipation of broadening their beer reach here in the Keystone state.
“As we’ve said before,” Wawa’s statement read, “we currently view this as a single-store, product expansion and at this point we have no specific plans to expand this further. As we do with all additions and innovations, we will monitor its success and continue to assess its potential.
“We are delighted,” it ended, “about this development and look forward to enhancing our offer to our Concordville customers.”
The Wawa in Concord at Naamans Creek Road and Route 202 will become the first Wawa in Delaware County to offer beer sales.