STOW — Circle K officials hope to break ground on a new prototype convenience store and gas station at 4936 Fishcreek Road — a $3.9 million endeavor — as its means of addressing plummeting sales.

"Over the past three years, our sales have declined about 30 percent," John Iski, real estate development manager for Circle K Corp., said. "… The last thing we want to do is close the store, and leave the community," Iski reported, adding, "…This is our answer to staying in Stow."

A public hearing will be conducted Sept. 27 at 5:30 p.m. on a rezoning request for about 1.4 acres adjacent to the existing Circle K  from R-3 Residential to C-3 Community Retail.  The request is being made by Savanna Van De Kamp Peet of Circle K, business owner, and Ruth Bourgeois and Richard Szeles of RSZ Properties, LLC, property owners. Stow Planning Director Rob Kurtz says the rezoning and a subsequent lot consolidation south on both Fishcreek and Stow roads, would create a new lot 2.7 acres in area. The current gas station is approximately 3,000 square feet in area and sits on a 0.6 acre parcel and Circle K hopes to construct a new building 4,350 square feet in size. Council member Brian D’Antonio (At-Large) said what Circle K officials are proposing "will be a huge improvement on that corner."

Iski described improvements to the store as being "a long time in coming." He predicted it would be likely that the site would have to close during construction, which he estimated would take about four months. 

Reporter Ellin Walsh can be reached at 330-541-9419, or @EllinWalsh_RPC.