By Kelsey Durham
The Bay Terrace community is lamenting the upcoming loss of its only gas station after learning the spot will be closing at the end of August, the store’s developer said.
The Gulf station, on Bell Boulevard near 23rd Avenue, will permanently shut its doors Aug. 31, when the station’s lease with Cord Meyer LLC, the lot’s development company, expires.
The Bay Terrace Shopping Center, which sits behind the gas station, posted a letter from Cord Meyer on its Facebook page July 22 letting the community know the station would be closing and the pumps would be removed within 60 days after its departure.
“The gas station has been a part of the Bay Terrace Shopping Center, servicing the community and surrounding areas for over 50 years, and we would like to acknowledge and thank our Gulf gas station tenant for its wonderful service to the community,” the letter said. “We wish them well in all their future endeavors.”
Anthony Colletti, chief operating officer of Cord Meyer, said his company decided not to renew the lease because of a slew of problems the business had endured throughout the terms of the lease, including several complaints about noise from cars pulling up late at night and even a few incidents where tanks were found to have leaks and needed to be replaced.
“We’ve had both pros and cons with this tenant — it’s been a roller coaster for 50 years,” he said. “It’s always sad when things come to an end, but we had a really good run.”
The gas station also currently houses a Dunkin’ Donuts inside its convenience store, and Colletti said the restaurant would be relocating to a new storefront inside the shopping center, on the upper level next to the Terrace Diner. The new store is expected to open by early fall, the developer said.
Colletti said rumors that a new tenant had been chosen were false, but he said the company has decided not to pursue another gas station. He said the lot would remain vacant for a few months while the gas station rips out the tanks and Cord Meyer searches for a new tenant
Warren Schreiber, president of the Bay Terrace Community Alliance, said the loss of the gas station will certainly affect the community, but he said residents seem to be dealing with it well so far.
“There’s no doubt some people are going to be inconvenienced,” he said. “People seem to be more upset by the loss of the convenience store than the gas station.”
Schreiber said there are two gas stations within close proximity to the shopping center, one at 35th Avenue and Bell Boulevard and one at the intersection of 150th Street and the Cross Island Parkway service road. He said residents will have to adjust to planning to fill up their cars elsewhere.
Reach reporter Kelsey Durham at 718-260-4573 or by e-mail at [email protected].