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QuikTrip Generation III store headed to Locust Grove

Special Photo / A QuikTrip GEN III building is larger, and provides new features for customers, such as an area where they can order specialty drinks.

Special Photo / A QuikTrip GEN III building is larger, and provides new features for customers, such as an area where they can order specialty drinks.

Quik Trip is planning to build one of the company’s newest, and largest versions of its stores, known as the Generation III, in Henry County.

“The basics are not going to change, which is our great customer service, cleanliness of our stores, and competitive pricing,” said Mike Thornbrugh, Quik Trip’s manager of Public and Government Affairs. “We are not going to abandon what we already do. Generation III gives us the opportunity to add to our food offers.”

The Locust Grove QT will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The company is looking to employ an average of 15 to 17 people to help operate the new store.

The standard QT store is about 4,600 square feet, and the Generation III store is about 5,700 square feet in size.

“We built our first test store, Generation III, in Tulsa Okla., about a year-and-a-half ago, and it’s done exactly what we had anticipated,” Thornbrugh said. “The Atlanta metro area has been a great part of success for Quik Trip. We have more stores and more employees in Georgia than any other division, and we are going to continue to grow.”

If the space becomes available, and if the location meets the Quik Trip’s criteria, the company will build in other areas in Henry County, added Thornbrugh.

“There is no question that we are pretty well-known for the tremendous volumes of sales that we do,” he said.

“Generation III is more modern than the typical [gas station/store] that we have in Henry County,” said Tim Young, development director for the City of Locust Grove. He said company officials applied for initial grading and the site plans in November, 2009.

“The last time we reviewed their building plans, was in 2010,” said Young. “There were some internal considerations that Quik Trip had to resolve between them and the neighboring property owner.”

Young said Quik Trip has asked for a revision to its previously approved architectural plans, and extended its approval time to 18 months for the city council, which is the architectural review board. The city council is scheduled to vote on the issue in January.

Thornbrugh said the company was scheduled to build a standard Quik Trip, but changed to the new prototype, Generation III.

The new-look Quik Trip is aimed at expanding the store’s menu of fresh foods from the QT Kitchen. “Typically, everything at a QT store is self-service,” Thornbrugh said. “We have a specialty area for drinks and coffee. It could be considered a “Barista,” for specialty hot and cold ordered drinks. It allows us the opportunity to step up the fountain drinks, and ice tea bar.

“In addition to fresh, deli sandwiches and salads, we are increasing our selections of ‘grab and go meals,’ said Thornbrugh. The store also will have soft-serve ice cream, smoothies, and prepared meals.