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    QuikTrip to Enter South Carolina

    A new 5,000-square-foot Spartanburg store will be one of the first to open in late 2011.

    SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- A prominent downtown property here with a troubled past is getting a second chance thanks to QuikTrip, the Spartanburg Herald Journal reported.

    The Tulsa, Okla.-based convenience store chain is planning to enter South Carolina with a new store at 489 W. Main St., on the site that was formerly Joe Gibson’s Auto World.

    QuikTrip, which operates 567 stores in the Midwest, Arizona and metro Atlanta areas, is positioning itself for a major incursion into South Carolina. The new 5,000-square-foot Spartanburg store will be one of the first QuikTrips in the state when it opens in late 2011.

    "We absolutely love the Upstate," QuikTrip spokesman Mike Thornbrugh told the newspaper. "South Carolina was a logical choice for us. When we got there and looked around, we realized it had everything we wanted. It’s a beautiful place. Our employees were excited about relocating there. The people have been great ... and the opportunity to grow is just amazing."

    According to site plans filed with the city planning office, the store will have 18 fueling stations, 75 parking spaces and access points on West Main Street and John B. White Sr. Boulevard.

    Thornbrugh said the upscale store will represent about a $3.5 million to $4 million investment. It will employ 15 to 18 people and feature many of the privately held company’s customer-oriented amenities, such as a kitchen that serves fresh-baked pastries, sandwiches and salads.

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