You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 2:42 p.m.

Another Tim Hortons: Chain signs deal to open store on Ann Arbor-Saline Road

By Lizzy Alfs

Canadian coffee shop chain Tim Hortons signed a deal last week to open in the revamped Shell gas station on Ann Arbor-Saline Road.

Gas station owner Abraham Ajrouch told on Monday that Tim Hortons will occupy about 1,100 square feet of the 4,089-square-foot gas station, which is located at 2679 Ann Arbor-Saline Road.


Tim Hortons signed a deal to open a store at the Shell gas station on Ann Arbor-Saline Road.

Lizzy Alfs |

Ajrouch received approval from the Ann Arbor City Council in July to go ahead with expansion plans for the station, which includes constructing an addition, converting a 900-square-foot car wash area into new retail space and reconfiguring the 9-space parking lot for a new total of 16 spaces.

Plans include a 22-foot-wide access drive off the northern reconfigured parking area to link to the Cranbrook Village shopping center, where Whole Foods and REI are located.

Construction currently is under way at the site, and Ajrouch said he hopes to complete the project by mid-September. “Tim Hortons Coming Soon” signs went up at the site over the weekend.

“We just finalized the (Tim Hortons) deal last week,” Ajrouch said. “I’ve been working on it for a long time. I mentioned we were going to open a coffee shop, and I was looking into different companies.”

Ajrouch said he surveyed customers at his gas station to find out which coffee shop they’d like to see open on Ann Arbor-Saline Road.

“A lot of people wanted to see a Tim Hortons here,” he said.

Plans do not include a drive-thru lane, he said.


A look at what the newly expanded Shell gas station will look like at the corner of Ann Arbor-Saline Road and Eisenhower Parkway.

Photo from Abraham Ajrouch

Ajrouch told Ann Arbor City Council in July he wanted to get out of the car wash business because it just isn’t profitable anymore. He called his Shell gas station the “gateway to Ann Arbor” and said it will be a “beautiful building” once the project is completed.

This is the sixth Tim Hortons deal in Washtenaw County since Aug. 2011. The chain, which has 4,042 company-operated and franchised stores, is rapidly expanding its southeast Michigan footprint.

Including its existing stores on Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti Township and Michigan Avenue in Saline, Tim Hortons plans to open in the following locations:

  • The first floor of Landmark student high-rise in downtown Ann Arbor.
  • At the site of the former Enzo’s at the northeast corner of State and Ellsworth roads. Ann Arbor City Council approved the store’s site plan in April.
  • In Maple Village at the site of the former Golden Chef Restaurant. No site plans have been submitted yet for this location, according to City Planner Matt Kowalski.
  • A vacant lot at the corner of Hewitt Road and Washtenaw Avenue in Ypsilanti Township.
  • Near the corner of James L. Hart Parkway and Huron Street in Ypsilanti Township, just south of Interstate 94.

So what's the next move for the chain?

A Tim Hortons representative could not be reached for comment, but it's likely a few more stores could pop up in the area in the coming years — a real estate manager for the chain told last year the company isn't capping its local expansion plans.

“We haven’t set a specific number,” Eric Ramsey said. “We are looking at different areas.”

View Larger Map

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at



Wed, Aug 8, 2012 : 3:32 a.m.

oh boy now it will be even more congested.but that's progress i guess????????????


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 6:25 p.m.

I think he should reconsider a drive-thru and make it work if it can at all, only saying this because I recently spoke to someone who works for TH and he said drive-thrus see a more than 50% increase in total sales.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 2:46 p.m.

Say yes to Dimos! Say yes to the Dexter Bakery! Really, try a real donut and you'll never go back!


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:49 p.m.

B 24 has to die for brownie sundaes, coffee and anything else sweet.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:20 p.m.

Right on! Support local much better!!! I would add Hinkley's Donuts in Jackson to this mix too!


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 2:47 p.m.

Forgot to include the Washtenaw Dairy!


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 11:39 a.m.

Ontario master plan... Build two Tim Hortons for every StarBucks in Washtenaw. Drive out the competition using NAFTA-backed subsidies. Add extra caffine, sugar, and a smile to ensure complete user addiction. Offer to build a new bridge to help alleviate the projected T.H. supply shortage.

John of Saline

Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:49 p.m.

It just might work.......


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 11:36 a.m.

Man, we could use a Dunkin' Donuts right about now.


Wed, Aug 8, 2012 : 3:04 p.m.

FYI there's a Dunkin Donuts on Hewitt Rd in Ypsi by the Wal Mart


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:48 p.m.

The closest one I saw was on Ford Road near Haggerty. Moved from Michigan and Sheldon. Too far for my taste. Got a nice mom and pop donut shop right in town.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 11:26 a.m.

Are all these Tim Hortons deals Canada's revenge for yesterday's soccer game?


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:47 p.m.

Revenge or not? I'll take one in my backyard.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:55 a.m.



Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 5:50 p.m.

What? Saying the name is against the rules? You guys need a life.

Ann English

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 10:52 p.m.

I'm sure you're referring to the northwest corner of Hewitt and Washtenaw; very conspicuous empty lot there, with open businesses at all three of the other corners.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:58 a.m.

The township approved this lot for Tim Hortons. All I have to do is nudge our voted officials into getting a building built.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 10:09 p.m.

Illegal signage has been the norm at that location; come on A2 tell these folks to stop violating the sign ordinances.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:19 p.m.

Whom have you reported this illegal signage to? perhaps you should do it...

UM owns

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 9:51 p.m.

Pretty sure you got the idea for this article from an commenter (not me) who tipped you off to this in the article about the other Tim Hortons locations last week. Give credit where credit is due?

Lizzy Alfs

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 10:09 p.m.

I actually noticed the two Tim Hortons banners at the Shell gas station when I drove by this weekend.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 9:09 p.m.

The hold up at Ellsworth & State is Pittsfield Twp - Tim Horton's has 180 days from sewer and water disconnect to reconnect or they have to pay for new connection - So they can't start until all permits have been granted.

Jojo B

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 8:44 p.m.

Tim Horton's is a welcome addition to that gas station as is connecting the gas station to the Whole Foods/REI parking lot. AWESOME!

Elaine F. Owsley

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 8:17 p.m.

Great news. Every time I see one of their ads on tv I wish there was one close by. When will the Maple Village store open?


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:57 p.m.

The map is inaccurate. This gas station sits on the NE-ish corner of A2-Saline and Eisenhower. It'll be interesting to see if traffic turns into a hot mess with people coming off 94, Eisenhower, or A2-Saline who would've normally just kept going but will now turn into the station to stop at Tim's.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:52 p.m.

The map accompanying the article has the proposed new Tim Hortons in the wrong place. The Ajrouch Shell station is nearly a half mile farther south, on the NE corner of Eisenhower and AA-Saline Road. The connection to Cranbrook center is welcome, although it would be more so if the car wash were not discontinued.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 9:13 p.m.

Some of the google maps are inaccurate. The map does correctly depict the NE corner of the intersection where the Tim Hortons will be at. I think google has the freeway ramps off where they really are.

Julie Baker

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 8:02 p.m.

Thanks, we've corrected that. It appears there was a problem with the location Google has listed for the address.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:58 p.m.

beat me to the punch, rm1 :)


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:52 p.m.

Sure wish they would come out Scio Twp....some days you just crave a good fresh doughnut and good coffee....


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 11:06 a.m.

Dimo's on Stadium. Dexter Bakery. Try a real donut sometime, it will change your life!

Lynn Liston

Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 12:08 a.m.

The Coffee House Creamery on Jackson Road has really great coffee and breakfast treats!


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:35 p.m.

Yeh NO KIDDING !!! has been reporting on the maple village and st and Ellsworth for what 6 months now with no follow up on why nothing has been even built yet. At least they have a SIGN up on this location

Lizzy Alfs

Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:04 p.m.

Haha. Not true :)


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 2:56 p.m.

Lizzy "I need to jump in on the conversation here more often" Only when your in agreement with me!

Lizzy Alfs

Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 1:35 p.m.

Thanks jcj, you're right! I need to jump in on the conversation here more often.


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 10:57 a.m.

Lizzy Thanks for the Maple Village update sorta. There have been so many articles on Tim Horton's. it would have made sense early on when we started questioning the Maple Village site to say you have tried to find out about that site with noresponse.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 11:27 p.m.

Thanks lizzy! It does not surprise me about lack of response from the owner who said he was going to open that one! Seems to be a lot of TALK in my opinion IF it's the owner of another location I frequent :)

Lizzy Alfs

Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:43 p.m.

The City of Ann Arbor has not received site plans for the Maple Village site, and Tim Hortons representatives have not responded to multiple requests for comment. Site plans were recently approved for the State and Ellsworth site, so we should see some activity. I will keep looking into the Maple Village site and report back if I make any progress.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 7:12 p.m.

if it takes them as long to open as it has on ellsworth - it will be 2020


Tue, Aug 7, 2012 : 3:56 a.m.

I agree. I drove by it today and said that thing will be up and running by September. Perfect for the start of a new school year. Bleary eyed teachers and students.


Mon, Aug 6, 2012 : 9:10 p.m.

I live nearby and the construction at this location is proceeding steadilly. They should open much sooner than the other location, for sure.