‘Not everything needs to change;’ Locals share thoughts on gas station potentially coming to area

CENTERVILLE — Centerville residents could see a new construction project starting soon.

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The city plans to demolish the longtime Elsa’s Mexican Restaurant on Far Hills Avenue and replace it with a new Sheetz gas station.

The city’s planning commission voted yes on building the new gas station at a city commission meeting last month, but the final decision is in the hands of the city council.

News Center 7′s Taylor Robertson spoke with Centerville residents and surrounding businesses to see how they feel about the potential for a new gas station.

The Epiphany Lutheran Church, which is next door to Elsa’s, sent a statement to News Center 7′s newsroom saying they do not want the Sheetz right next door.

In the statement, the church says it is worried that the gas station will draw in more crime.

The church has a preschool with 135 students, and they are not comfortable with the sale of CBD products and alcohol being so close to them.

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They also say they fear it could extend the response time for first responders due to the increase in traffic.

They made it clear that they do not oppose Sheetz coming into Centerville, but they don’t want it right next to their church.

22-year Centerville resident Piper Kirby said her family used to eat at the Elsa’s nearly every weekend growing up.

“It was just one of our nightly dinner places every week,” Kirby said.

She continued and said she feels like Centerville has too many gas stations already.

“Just keep it the way it is. Not everything needs to change,” Kirby said.

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11-year Centerville resident Jamie Vannoy said the area already has a lot of gas stations, but he isn’t worried about a potential uptick in crime.

“Just overall in general with Centerville and Kettering and stuff, I’m not usually that worried about crime at any of the gas stations,” Vannoy said.

“I can see that as a real problem especially with preschool in the church,” Kirby said

Epiphany Lutheran Church has filed an appeal with the city and they plan to attend the upcoming city council meeting to speak on why they are opposing the new Sheetz.

According to the City of Centerville’s website, the next meeting will take place at the council chambers on Monday at 7:30 p.m.

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