Along with the Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market that will be closing at the northwest corner of 13th and Oliver, the longtime QuikTrip on the northeast corner is shutting down, too.
“I’m just sick,” Wichita City Council member Lavonta Williams says of the one-two punch.
“As a community, we’re at a loss.”
QuikTrip spokesman Mike Thornbrugh says the chain knew when it tore down its QuikTrip at Central and Oliver and built a new Generation 3 model there that it would affect the store at 13th and Oliver.
“We didn’t know it was going to be affected as dramatically as it has,” he says.
“The other store has suffered much quicker than we anticipated,” Thornbrugh says. “We’ve been watching it for a while, and we could see that, unfortunately, the sales continue to decline.”
The 13th and Oliver QuikTrip has been there since 1992.
Thornbrugh says he wasn’t aware of Wal-Mart’s decision to close there.
He says QuikTrip’s decision is “purely a decision based on the economic viability.”
Williams says QuikTrip notified her of its decision earlier this week.
“I’m not happy-happy about it, but I was OK,” she says. “But today, I’m not OK.”
She says it’s “devastating” to see so much of what that area has worked for go away.
“We’ve come so far,” Williams says. “It’s almost like starting over.”
She says the community is losing valuable corporate partnerships in that area.
“It’s quite a blow.”
Thornbrugh isn’t sure when that QuikTrip’s last day will be.
“I’m sure it’ll be fairly soon.”
Though she’s down, Williams says don’t count that area of Wichita out.
“We have to overcome.”