Demolition begins at site for incoming Wawa in Lewisburg

May 10—LEWISBURG — Demolition for the former Just Lite It fireworks store started this week to make way for the incoming Wawa.

The site at 8601 Westbranch Highway, Lewisburg, was mostly a pile of rubble, as of Thursday. Wawa will be located at the intersection of Route 15 and Zeigler Road.

"I have no updates other than the plans have been approved and signed," said Kelly Township Board of Supervisors Chairman David Hassenplug. "It's up to them now."

Hassenplug said utility work and site prep work had been conducted.

The fireworks store, owned by brothers Ty and Jason Drumm, was severely damaged in July by an EF-1 tornado. The new fireworks store opened in April about a quarter-mile west of the former facility at 8601 Westbranch Highway, Lewisburg.

Kelly Township is also the location of the incoming Arby's and Popeyes, which broke ground in late September at a lot between Hampton Inn and Sheetz along Route 15.

Arby's and Popeyes will be built on the same lot but two separate buildings. Access will be through AJK Boulevard and International Drive.

"I do know they're doing the site work," said Hassenplug. "Curbing was put in. They're prepping the area for paving. No structures have been built yet."

Wawa announced in April its efforts to build 40 new stores in Central Pennsylvania markets, including one in Union County by the end of 2025. The announcement was made during a groundbreaking ceremony for the official start of construction on its first store in Central Pennsylvania located in Dauphin County at Harrisburg Pike & Meade Road, Middletown.

"It's official. Wawa is spreading our wings to reach Central Pennsylvania, and we couldn't be more thrilled to share details of our exciting growth plans with our newest soon-to-be neighbors," said Brian Schaller, President of Wawa, in a prepared media release. "Our Community Day and groundbreaking events gave us the opportunity to meet new faces and share a little bit about our history and what makes Wawa such an ideal fit for communities here. We are thrilled to break ground on our first store in the region, launch our expansion plans and get closer to our first grand openings in 2024."

In late 2024, stores in Middletown, York, Dover, Williamsport, Hanover and Enola will be open. It is currently working towards having up to 12 stores open in Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Lycoming, Northumberland, Union and York Counties by the end of 2025.

Over the next five years, Wawa plans to have up to 40 stores, opening approximately five to seven a year to serve the Central Pennsylvania market as it continues to expand its footprint and reach new Pennsylvania markets along the Susquehanna River. To build each store, Wawa will invest approximately $7 million and employ, on average, 140 contractors and local partners. Once open, each store will employ an average of 35 associates, with Wawa expecting to create 1,400 new long-term jobs as a result of expansion in Central Pennsylvania.

Efforts to reach representatives of the three incoming businesses for more information were unsuccessful.