Photo by John F. Russell
A fence surrounds the lot where Go-fer Foods once operated in Steamboat Springs. The building has been vacant since Go-fers closed its doors. However, Eric and Jodi Dorris have leased the space and are planning to open a convenience store at the location.
A local couple has signed a lease to reopen the Space Station gas station and convenience store in downtown Steamboat Springs. The station at Seventh Street and Lincoln Avenue has sat vacant for more than two years, and its owner was nearly cited for nuisance issues by the city.
Eric and Jodi Dorris, owners of Yampa Valley Services cleaning company and Cen tral Park Laundromat, signed a lease last week with Grand Junction-based Monument Oil, which owns the property. Eric Dorris said he hopes to have the store open by early September.
"I'm shooting for Saturday of Labor Day weekend, but that may change," Dorris said. "We have a lot of work to do. The list is endless."
Dorris said he is losing the Go-fer Foods tag and that the entire business will be known simply as Space Station.
"It's going to be just like it was," Dorris said. "Our goal is to have this revert back to being the locals' convenience store. : It's going to be good for the community."
The vacant lot has attracted litter, tall weeds and graffiti. It was surrounded by a chain-link fence in an effort to prevent parking on the site. Earlier this year, the city notified Monument Oil that it was in violation of city nuisance regulations. Planning and Community Development Director Tom Leeson said the company subsequently cleaned up the site and asked that the city not take any enforcement steps while it worked on negotiating a lease. The city agreed, and on Monday, city officials said they were thrilled to hear the property will be used again.
Dorris said the chain-link fence won't be removed anytime soon, however, because of all the work that needs to be done on the site.
"It makes more sense to have the fence up instead of towing cars off every day," Dorris said.
Jon Sanders, commercial real estate broker associate with Green Courte Partners' downtown redevelopment projects, said there also may be plans to lease downtown's other vacant gas station site at Third Street and Lincoln Avenue. The River Walk redevelopment project that includes the building that used to house a Shell gas station and Blimpie sandwich shop has been delayed.
Sanders said Green Courte is working to remove the gas pumps on the site, which is the reason for a fence and heavy equipment that recently have appeared on the lot. Sanders said a potential tenant is "contemplating what they want to do" and that another option is to raze the building.
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