Hoagies Everywhere: Wawa to Expand to 1800 Stores Across NJ and Beyond
If you think there are a lot of Wawa stores now, just wait until you see what happens over the next several years.
If you have traveled to Orlando, FL, over the past several years, you know that as soon as you drive out of the airport, you'll pass a Wawa. Knowing that countless people fly from the Philadelphia area to central Florida for vacation, Wawa stores began popping up in the Sunshine State ten years ago. Since then, Wawa stores are now as common in Florida as they are in the Garden State.
And while central Florida is a hot spot for folks who are looking to get away, Wawa is looking beyond that area. Way beyond.
Wawa has just announced plans to expand across the Florida panhandle and Alabama.
Yes, you will soon be able to grab a hoagie and a cup of coffee in Panama City or Tallahassee and even in Mobile, Alabama.
According to AL.com, Wawa has announced they will be building 40 stores along the Interstate 10 corridor over the next several years, with the first ones opening in 2024.
But that's not the big story
The big story is Wawa is looking to double their number of stores over the next eight years.
With 950 stores now, company officials have set a goal of having 1,800 by 2030.
That's about 100 new stores every year for the next eight years.
And where are all of these new stores going?
A 1930s idea for the 2030s
If you ever took a family vacation back in the 70s or 80s and you drove to Florida, you may remember seeing Stuckey's stores all along Interstate 95. Stuckey's was known as a place where you could stop for some candy or a snack -- they were everywhere.
The Stuckey's chain was founded in the 1930s by W. S. Stuckey, Sr., who decided to sell pecans to motorists driving to Florida. In the decades that followed, Stuckey's evolved and grew to some 350 stores before the chain started to struggle when interstate highways took over.
Stuckey's is still around but they are not in the forefront like they were back in the day.
Now, Wawa is looking to be the next Stuckey's. They want to be everywhere along I-95.
If you are headed south, instead of having to grab a pre-made sandwich from a gas station and an awful cup of coffee that was brewed 15 hours ago, Wawa stores will dot the landscape to rescue you.
John Poplawski, Wawa’s Vice President of Real Estate, recently said,
Over the years, we’ve been delighted to hear from so many people from so many areas, who are interested in having a Wawa closer to home. We couldn’t be more excited to bring Wawa’s one-of-a-kind brand and offering to these new markets in the near future. We look forward to expanding beyond our current reach and serving these new markets with our quality fresh food and beverages and, as always, our deep commitment to the communities in which we operate.