If you are a regular customer at Kroger in Hinesville you may have noticed recently that part of the parking lot has been sectioned off by a green temporary fence. The sectioned off area will become a new Kroger gas station.
Jeff Ricketson, executive director of the Liberty Consolidated Planning Commission, confirmed Kroger’s ongoing construction for the fuel pumps.
“The LCPC (Liberty Consolidated Planning Commission) has approved plans for a fuel center at the existing Kroger Store on US 84 and that is currently under construction,” Ricketson said.
Felix Turner, with Kroger’s Atlanta Division media relations, provided the Courier some details pertaining to the new fuel station.
“I think it’s just going to be pumps with a kiosk, not a walk in kiosk,’’ he said. Turner said that one of the reasons Kroger decided to build a fuel station is to provide convenience for Hinesville area customers. “We received feedback from our customers that they would like to have a fuel station there,” he said. One of the benefits of the Kroger fuel station will be its “Fuel Points Program,” according to Turner.
Turner explained that when customers use their Kroger shopper’s card they can earn one fuel point for every $1 they spend, and can earn twice as much fuel points on Kroger Gift Cards.
Kroger officials believe that the Fuel Points Program can save customers money on gas. Hinesville is one of the most expensive places to buy gas in Georgia according to AAA – The Auto Club Group, which ranked the most expensive metro markets on Monday: Atlanta ($2.74), Gainesville ($2.69), Hinesville- Fort Stewart ($2.64), and Macon ($2.63). According to AAA – The Auto Club Group, the least expensive gas in the state can be found in Warner Robbins ($2.54), Catoosa-Dade-Walker ($2.52) and Columbus ($2.50).
Some residents may worry that the area blocked off for a fuel station will tighten the store’s parking lot space and take away parking space from neighboring businesses that use the same parking lot. Regarding possible parking lot concerns, Turner said, “The parking lot was taken into consideration, but we feel that we can put a fuel station in that location and still be able to support our customers’ pleasant shopping experience.”
The Courier was recently asked by numerous local residents if Kroger was relocating to a different area in Hinesville so that it could expand into a Super Kroger. Both Ricketson and Turner stated that they were unaware of any plans for expansion. Turner believes that the fuel station may be a good addition to the area.
“Kroger is right outside Fort Stewart so we will be able to service a lot of military families in addition to the people in that area,” he said. “Overall we have over 140 fuel stations in our division so it’s right in line with our strategy to bring fuel stations.”