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Tulsa-based QuikTrip planning further Upstate expansion

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A Tulsa-based convenience store chain has plans to bring its gas station/store to other parts of the Upstate.

Mike Thornburgh, spokesman for QuikTrip Inc., said the company has five Upstate locations either planned, under construction or near opening and the company has no plans to stop there.

The latest development is at the corner of Laurens Road and Fairforest Way — adjacent to the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research. The location will be where a former manufacturing facility sits. According to a filing with the city of Greenville, the property owners — JRB Partners LLC and Fairforest Way LLC — are asking the Greenville Planning Commission to approve annexing the corner and rezoning to C3 regional commercial district.

The property is currently in Greenville County and zoned C-3 commercial district.

“We already received all the necessary permitting from the county,” Thornburgh said. “The city annexed it and we are going through the process of the necessary permitting from the city.”

The Fairforest Way location is one of five that the chain has on the books. The others include 2313 Reidville Road in Spartanburg, two in Fort Mill and another at 7599 Augusta Road in Piedmont. All five are expected to be open sometime in 2017 with the Spartanburg location opening before Christmas.

“Honestly, it’s a marketplace that we have really been well-received by the consumer and we believe there is an excellent opportunity for us to grow,” Thornburgh said.

QuikTrip now has 70 stores in its Carolinas region — all being in the Charlotte metro area and the Upstate. Of the 70, the chain has 32 in the Upstate.

“When we made the decision to go to the Carolinas, we thought we had an opportunity to do well and to build and operate a lot of stores,” Thornburgh said. “What we didn’t know was that we have been received as well as we have in the market.”

He added the chain is planning future developments, “but it has to be in the right location.”

As for additional expansion outside of the Upstate, Thornburgh said the company doesn’t have plans to develop in Columbia or Charleston at this time.

“It takes a really long time to do really well and start to make money,” Thornburgh said. “We concentrate until we hit mass — and that is when you can drive all over an area and know who we are — and we are not, at this point, looking to expand outside of the area, but who knows.”

Reach Matthew Clark at 864-235-5677, ext. 107.

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