SCHROON LAKE — The existing Stewart’s Shop, located at the corner of Route 9 and Dock Street in Schroon Lake, is slated to be razed and rebuilt larger this fall.
With the purchase of a single family home behind the current store, Stewart’s is hoping to expand the shop size from 2,500 to 3,700-square-feet.
The new store would be built behind the existing building, with increased space allowing for a wider selection of food, including pizza.
The store has been a staple of Main Street’s landscape since its opening in June 1980 and some of the employees have been working at this location for almost as long.
Employee Lindsey Reynolds said the prospect of an increased product line will be “better for the summer and hopefully attract more people to the store.”
Preliminarily plans for the new store were presented by company real estate representative Steve Kinley during a meeting of the Schroon Town Board on April 3.
The new store will be the next in a succession of upgrades for Stewart’s Shops over the last year, with six new stores and 10 remodels completed in 2016.
Additionally, Kinley stated that there would be an increase from two to three fuel dispensers, including one diesel pump.
The new layout would move the fueling stations further back from the curb, as well as change their orientation. Town officials and store representatives alike are hoping that this will ease traffic flows in and out of the store parking lot during peak seasons.
Other improvements include an increase to a total of 27 parking spaces and a tightening up of the curbs. Plans also include the addition of picnic tables overlooking the lake and adjacent town park.
The plan now will go before the town’s Zoning Committee, where company officials are looking to receive a variance. The new lot with the single family dwelling is not zoned for commercial purposes, so Stewart’s is seeking a variance to move forward with the upgrade.
Most regular customers said they were excited about the new store. One resident, Joseph Altman said he frequents the store almost daily and said he was happy that the Schroon Lake location will be seeing an upgrade.
Town board members said it is important that the facade, which will be similar to store remodels in Ticonderoga and Lake George, will be in keeping with the region’s local Adirondack charm.
Residents at the town meeting said they’d like to be involved in the planning process to make sure that the design is in character with the downtown. Stewart’s officials were open to input from board members and said they were looking forward to progressing with the project in the coming months.