Retail report: Mobil gas station to reopen on Washtenaw near US-23 following 2-year closure
Angela Cesare | AnnArbor.com
Misty Filsinger said the station, located at 4005 Washtenaw, will reopen Thursday after being closed for over two years. Filsinger worked as a manager at the Mobil under the previous owner before beginning the process to buy the vacant space about a year ago.
Filsinger said she was interested in buying the station because she believes this Pittsfield Township location gets steady business from people in the area.
“I know what this station can do,” Filsinger said. “I’m assuming our customers will come back to us.”
Filsinger, who is closing on her loan in a week, said the purchasing process took a long time due to issues related to the “funding and financing of a non-operable gas station.”
According to Pittsfield Township tax records, the previous owners of the property were Adams O.A. LLC, registered to Kadry Ebrahim. The assessed value of the property is $336,900, giving it an estimated market value of just over $670,000.
Filsinger, an Ypsilanti resident, would not disclose the purchase price or estimate her total investment.
However, she said her renovations have included putting in a new roof, buying new gas pumps and repainting the building.
“I really cleaned up the whole place,” Filsinger said. “It looks cleaner than I’ve ever seen a gas station.”
Filsinger’s purchase comes at a time when Ann Arbor has seen a wave of gas station changes. In the past few years, several station owners boarded their doors and moved out.
More recently, gas station developments have included the reopening and remodeling of the Marathon by Arborland, the opening of the Kroger Fuel Center on Carpenter and the planned reopening of the former Packard Mini Mart.
According to a 2010 report, Mark Griffin of the Michigan Petroleum Association said gas stations were shrinking across the state because owners “don’t make money selling gasoline.” He said gas sales were down 17 percent from where they were in 2004.
These decreases in consumption rates are beginning to level off though, said Jonathan Cogan of the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
“Consumption is expected to be fairly flat between this year and last year,” Cogan said. “It is growing slightly, but not by much.”
According to an EIA inventory, U.S. gas consumption was 9.03 million barrels per day in 2010. That number is projected to grow to 9.12 by 2012.
Although Michigan gas prices set a state record at $4.26 a gallon this month for a day's average, Mobil owner Filsinger said she expects her station to get business because her product is a “necessary commodity.”
“First, nobody has gas prices much lower than the other,” Filsinger said. “We’re all on the same page. And gas is like food. You may reduce your usage, but you have to have it.”
Filsinger said she plans to hire three employees. She said, "I hope to keep things local by creating a few jobs for people in the area."
Pittsfield Township supervisor Mandy Grewal said she hopes these recent gas station openings and trends in consumption rates are reflective of a positive economic turn.
“This may signify that the economy is taking a turn for the better,” Grewal said. “The Pittsfield area is a very vital corridor for the region. I think that’s reflected in some of the reopenings we’ve seen in the last few years.”