Casey's General Store expansion approved, no alcohol sales allowed

By Christina Luick

Jan. 14, 2020

CEDARBURG — Casey’s General Store is good to go on its plan to construct a 1,479-square-foot addition and other changes to the convenience store, but it won't be allowed to sell alcohol.

The Town of Cedarburg Board unanimously approved Wednesday all conditions of the conditional use permit with the exception of allowing alcohol sales at this business located at 506 N. Wauwatosa Road. Town Supervisor Gary Wickert was excused from the meeting.

The former Tri-Par at 506 N. Wauwatosa Road was acquired by Casey's in 2018. Casey's General Store is a chain of convenience stores that is headquartered in Ankeny, Iowa.

The purpose of the 1,479-square-foot addition would be to expand its kitchen facilities to make food such as pizza. Casey's is the fifth largest pizza chain in the United States.

“The intent is really to make (the addition) look like it has always been there and to provide Casey's the ability to have a kitchen where they can serve the products that they do at the other places,” said Lauren Downing of ARC Design Resources, which is representing Casey's as the civil engineer.

“We appreciate their consideration and beer is not dependent on our sales there, it’s our pizza that is,” said Area Supervisor Michelle Mccrea, who oversees more than 10 Casey's General Stores. “With the upcoming construction and remodel, then we’ll be able to see that pizza. We're still happy that we're going to get pizza.”

The original conditional use permit that Tri-Par was issued in 1998 did not allow for beer or alcohol sales.

However, Tri-Par was inadvertently issued a beer and liquor license in 2004 and the town notified them the license would not be renewed the following year, according to the Town Board agenda packet. Tri-Par submitted a CUP application to amend the permit to allow for the addition of the beer and liquor licenses in 2005 but the Town Board denied the request.

The Town Plan Commission recommended approval with a 4-2 vote for the permit during its meeting in December. A few residents who lived near Casey’s spoke against allowing the convenience store to pursue beer and alcohol licenses during the public hearing.

Before the vote on Wednesday, Mccrea said if they were allowed to pursue beer and alcohol licenses at that location she would make sure the store initiated a 100 percent ID policy.

Town Supervisor Bill Wattson said he was opposed to alcohol sales at this location, noting that the convenience store is near schools and a residential area.

“I don’t make this decision lightly because I don’t want to interfere with someone's business but on the other hand I think the location is problematic in this case,” he said.

Town Supervisor Wayne Pipkorn asked Mccrea if there would be onsite consumption and she replied there would not be.

Pipkorn said he couldn’t see anybody buying a six-pack, drinking it in the parking lot and throwing a can a half block down the road.

Town Supervisor Thomas Esser said he was skeptical of allowing alcohol sales at the location and like Pipkorn, mentioned Casey’s is dealing with a neighboring residential area instead of a commercial area. Chairman David Salvaggio said his opinion hasn’t changed since the Plan Commission meeting and agreed that because of the store’s location there shouldn’t be alcohol sales. He added that he likes the building and appreciated Casey’s efforts to accommodate nearby residents by changing the landscape plantings to help block some light from the property.

In addition, Casey’s will be updating its outdoor sign to be a channel letter sign with LED gas prices. Downing said during the Plan Commission meeting that the new sign will not be larger than the existing sign and it will be located in the same spot.

A six-foot-tall cedar property line fence will be put up along the north and east side of the property, as well as some landscaping of plantings on Western Avenue and Wauwatosa Road.

To meet town requirements, the updated plan also includes supplying 25 parking spaces on the property. Downing said Casey's is planning to utilize the existing pavement as much as possible to provide the additional parking spaces.

A cedar dumpster enclosure will also be constructed.

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