Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Lidl USA

Greater Manchester store
Lidl have finally arrived in the US, but only in the mid-Atlantic right now.  I posted on them five years ago, but decided to start from scratch instead of just updating an old article.  They will now have to compete with Aldi here in North America as they do Europe (neither are in Canada yet, but similar chains exist there).  As usual, CNY will be the main focus as that's what I know best, but I know I can try elsewhere too:

Canandaigua - vacancy on US 20/NY 5 and 332
Fulton - former Fays/Eckerd or kmart on NY 481 (arch-rival yet to be built up or down the street)
Cortland - former P&C on NY 41 and US 11
Oswego - former Price Chopper near Fort Ontario and Port of Oswego
Chittenango - former Kinney Drugs on NY 5 and 13
Bridgeport - former Kinney or Victory on NY 31 and/or 298
Cicero - former Burlington Coat Factory near Drivers Village
New Hartford - former Price Chopper or kmart on NY 5A
Rochester - former CVS on NY 15
Irondequoit - Medley Ctr
Liverpool - former kmart or Price Chopper on CR 57
deWitt - former Dicks on NY 5
East Syracuse - former CountryMax/Agway on NY 290
Henrietta - former Tops or other vacancy on NY 252
Auburn - former P&C
Geneva - former Tops on NY 5 and US 20
Baldwinsville - former Rite Aid
Oneida - former Herb Phillipsons downtown on NY 46
Rome - former car dealer on NY 49 and 365
Watervliet  - former Price Chopper on NY 32
Menands - former Save-a-Lot on NY 32
Palatine Bridge - former Ames on NY 5
Poughkeepsie - former ShopRite on NY 55 and US 44
North Syracuse - former Media Play on US 11
Elbridge - former Family Dollar on NY 5

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Former Jreck Subs locations

First time at Jreck's
Short-lived Eastern Ontario location.
Jreck Subs is a regional chain that may not go as far as Jersey Mikes or Schlotzskys (more on them another day) but they hold their own.  Like many places, they had to let some locations go:

Oswego - downtown, now Calios
Fulton - downtown, now Metro PCS
Fulton - NY 3, now Hometown Mobile
North Syracuse - US 11, Pitcher Hill, later an Italian eatery, now vacant
Syracuse - SU Hill, now The Pita Pit
Kingston, ONT* (pictured)
Liverpool - 7th North St. & Buckley co-branded with Arthur Treachers, now Subway
deWitt - NY 5 and Orrick Road, now ExpressMart/Sunoco

*TBD **former Tim Hortons

They ought to open here:

North Syracuse - reclaim old spot; closest is up the road in Cicero
Liverpool - across Buckley Road in **
Cortland - NY 13**
Oneida - NY 5**
East Syracuse - NY 290 ** or former JDs Fish and Grill
Syracuse - downtown, Armory Square, S Franklin and Walton Sts.
Oswego - NY 481**
Fayetteville - former Eastern Mountain Sports
Baldwinsville - Moyers Corners, NY 31 and CR 57, former Hardees/Dougs Fish Fry/**
Chittenango - former Kinney Drugs, NY 5 and 13

Saturday, June 17, 2017


Kmart Reynoldsburg, OH 2
Ohio Capital Region closing
kmart along with their sister chain Sears have been in decline in recent years unable to compete with Walmart, Target, and amazon as other rivals like Caldor, Ames, Jamesway, Woolco and Hills have shut their doors.  kmart had several stores in CNY (Cortland, Liverpool and Mattydale remain for the time being) and beyond that lost their blue light:

deWitt - NY 5; now Dicks
Nedrow - US 11; later a flea market
Syracuse - Western Lights; later Herb Phillipsons
New Hartford - NY 5A
Fulton - NY 481
Auburn - NY 5
Liverpool - CR 57 (on the way out)
Oswego - NY 104 (TBA)
Syracuse - downtown; later CVS; now a beauty supply
Colonie - NY 5
Reynoldsburg, OH (pictured)
Geneva - NY 5/US 20 (it's a small town and I saw a vacancy that would make sense)
Kingston - NY 32 and US 9W
Ithaca - NY 13/34/96

All vacant or unknown unless otherwise indicated.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

E85 in CNY

E 85 Cheap. Never seen anything but GMs that use it though.
E85 at a pump in Wescoville, PA (Allentown/Bethlehem area)
E85 (ethanol) fuel has been elusive for those with FlexFuel vehicles in CNY (mainly GM and Chrysler).  The last place to have it was Fastrac on NY 3 & 481 in Fulton until a few years ago when they switched to the opposite (Ethanol Free 91) for boats, older and luxury cars.  Most regular fuel in North America now has 10% ethanol but it's not the same.  Sunoco (shown here) turned part of the old Miller plant a couple miles away into an ethanol plant yet there isn't an E85 pump like you see here in Lehigh Valley near Syracuse.  Rochester has the closest ones if not somewhere on the way on the Thruway.  A Mobil in Albany on US 20 has it too.  A place in Homer in Cortland County may have as well but even in a small town, I can't find much to go on.  Tops and ShopRite (also in the Capital Region) should offer this.  Existing Speedways in the Midwest do and should add it when they open original stores (as opposed to ex-Hess ones).  I'll do a post on just that later.  E85 also tends to cost less than normal 87 octane.  It varies across the country.  It only makes sense to get it out of town if you're staying there a period or need to fill up or there's no point.  There's also E10 and E15 in some areas and states, but E85 is the one that I know.  Wood chips and ag waste is also used to make E-fuels.  You can't even get leaded gas in the US anymore (vintage cars now use lead substitute here).
The corn crop is limited here as it is with the difficult spring having an effect on the harvest.  Maize is more of a priority for food than motorcars yet there must be fields that are only used by Big Oil.

Sunday, June 4, 2017


Bay Area location
This one will be a change of pace.  Travelodge are part of the Wyndham conglomerate, but currently have no locations in CNY like some of their sister chains do.  The only place I can think of for them now is the former Hampton Inn & Suites (owned by rivals Hilton) on 7th North Street in Liverpool as they moved around the corner to Buckley and Elwood Davis Roads where another competitor Ramada Inn used to be.  It's a bit of a challenge as to where else they could open coming up with ideas like I can for other things.  I do see closed and abandoned motels, but they're usually in spots that don't get the same kind of traffic anymore as these low-rent roadside inns have declined in the past few generations since the motorways were built, and we all know the adage of location, location, location.  The spot I know of is just that as it's right near the major crossroads of I-81 and I-90 (NYS Thruway) as well as close to the airport, Destiny USA, SU, downtown and the city.  It'd be good to have another place for people to stay, especially during peak periods such as major holidays and special events as they can fill up as just as much as they can in major areas like downstate and San Antonio, TX for that matter.  I've only seen it in Gananoque, ONT myself if not Farmington, NY but maybe somewhere else.
Travelodge however were in Syracuse in the past at 454 James Street (NY 290 at US 11) just east of downtown and south of the north side.  It became an Econo Lodge (franchise owners often switch chains) and is now Choice Hotels sister chain Quality Inn.  Seeing a couple vintage postcards of other past locations had reminded me, so maybe now Travelodge can come full circle in CNY.  Little Falls in Herkimer County is the closest one at this time (small town).
UPDATE: The franchise owners of the Hampton will bring its sister brand Tru by Hilton to the old site (another one Tapestry will be at Hotel Skyler on SU Hill).  Maybe a Travelodge could be built across Buckley Road from the Hampton instead where indie motel United Inn was demolished several years ago.  Carnegie who run Maplewood Inn around the block (a former Days Inn) and bought out Pier 57 on Ct Rt 57 in Bayberry could convert Maplewood into a Travelodge.  I just know it has to be a part of town where there is the traffic and demand are enough to accommodate someone new to the area looking for a place for the night at short notice either on the fly or close to a peak period.  Even Northern Lights on US 11 in North Syracuse, which has little going on these days, could be torn down, except for where business still exists, of course, to build Travelodge since it's right near the airport and Thruway.  Could require certain zoning if I'm not mistaken.
UPDATE II: The former leMoyne Manor on Old Liverpool Road in Galeville would also work.

Friday, June 2, 2017

South Beach Tanning

tanning bed
No free photo of South Beach available
Now here's a post that George Hamilton can relate to! The closure of Zoom Tan and Total Tan in deWitt due to a merger opens the idea of a rival chain South Beach Tanning coming to CNY.  The franchise in Webster just outside Rochester is the closest one right now.  Good to try something new as far as a business possibility:

deWitt (Erie Blvd E) - former Total Tan, Marshalls Plaza, NY 5
deWitt (Nottingham Rd) - former Zoom Tan
Westvale - former Dance Centre, NY 5
Liverpool - former Verizon Wireless, NY 31
Auburn - Fingerlakes Mall, NY 5 & US 20
New Hartford - Sangertown Square, NY 5 & 5A
Cortland - Riverside Plaza, NY 13
Syracuse - Destiny USA
North Syracuse - US 11
Fulton - former Eckerd/Fays, NY 481
Albany - Colonie Centre, NY 5

Sunday, May 28, 2017


Typical location
After winning a gift card for Mobil in a competition, it dawned on me that they have fewer locations than in the past.  Exxon (formerly Esso; name used outside the US today) had a few in CNY as well prior to their reunion with Mobil as descendants of Standard Oil Company.

North Syracuse, US 11 & Bear Rd, now abandoned
Liverpool (Bayberry) - Ct Rt 57 and John Glenn Blvd*
Liverpool - Henry Clay Blvd and Buckley Road*
Liverpool (Galeville) - 7th North St and Buckley Rd*
Liverpool (village) - Ct Rt 57, now Valero
Liverpool (Sugarwood Corners) - Buckley and Bear Rds; later Valero; now Gulf.
Clay - NY 31 & 481*
Syracuse (Eastwood) - Grant Blvd and Teall Ave, now Citgo
Fairmount (Exxon) - NY 5, now Carrs Automotive
Onondaga (Exxon) - NY 175, now Nice 'n Easy
Syracuse (east side) - NY 5 and Teall Ave, now PriceRite
Syracuse (west side) - Delaware and Grand Aves, now indie
Syracuse (north side) - US 11, now Valero
Syracuse (south side) - S Salina St, now indie (one at NY 173 & US 11 still open)
deWitt - NY 5*
Upstate NY (various) - I-90*
Fulton - NY 481 and Ct Rt 57, Babcock Oil Co., now Gulf

*now Sunoco