Stewart’s wins right to buy former Dick & Jerry’s site in Galway
GALWAY Stewart’s Shops made a successful bid Wednesday on the former Dick & Jerry’s Minimart at the corner of routes 147 and 29 in Galway.
Officials at the Malta-based convenience store chain will now submit plans to demolish the existing store and gas station and build a Stewart’s in its place.
Stewart’s bid on the property in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Northern District of New York. The owner of Dick & Jerry’s, P.J. & H.S. Corp., filed for bankruptcy in April, months after Stewart’s signed a option to buy the property, said Tom L. Lewis, Stewart’s real estate representative.
The bankruptcy filing voided that option, but Stewart’s was the only bidder during the subsequent bankruptcy proceedings, so it got the property at 1841 Route 29 without an auction, Lewis said.
Lewis declined to say Wednesday how much the company is paying for the property, and the record of Wednesday’s court proceeding is not yet available to the public.
The sale is contingent on Stewart’s getting the necessary town Planning Board and Zoning Board approvals by the end of December, he said.
“I would not buy it as is without knowing that I had the town approvals,” Lewis said.
The site most likely has underground contamination from being used as an auto body shop, but Stewart’s is used to doing those types of environmental cleanups, so that will not present an obstacle, he said.
Galway does not currently have a Stewart’s shop, and there are few stores of any type in the rural town.
The closest Stewart’s is at the junction of routes 67 and 147 in Charlton, about six miles from the former Dick & Jerry’s.
When P.J. & H.S. Corp. filed the Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding, it declared $525,129 in assets, including the property valued at $506,429, and $415,805 in liabilities.
The company listed 50 creditors, including mortgages to First Niagara and Midway Oil Corp.
In its court papers, the company said it had $1.7 million in gross sales in 2011 and $2 million in 2010. It closed at the end of last year.
The bankruptcy trustee for P.J. & H.S. Corp. could not be reached for comment Wednesday afternoon.