Southeastern PA

Wawa to close first store opened 50 years ago

FOLSOM, Pa. - Wawa plans to close the very first convenience store the chain opened in suburban Philadelphia a half-century ago.

The company plans a larger store in Ridley Township, Delaware County, with six gasoline islands on a four-acre site on Route 420, about one-third of a mile away, said Susan Bratton, Wawa's regional real estate manager.

"It will still be store 1 for us, even though it's a new store," Bratton said.

The new development was opposed by township commissioners last year, but court-ordered negotiations resulted in approval with certain conditions.

Britton said officials hope the new store will be open by the spring of 2016. She said the company hopes to include some historic photos of the original store in the new building.

Since the original store opened on April 16, 1964, the privately held chain has grown to operate more than 630 stores in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Florida, including dozens in Berks County and the Lehigh Valley.

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