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Sky's the Limit Remodel Honorable Mention: Stripes Store #2265

Susser Holdings Corp.'s retail operation, Stripes LLC, sought to adapt an existing prototype new store design into an existing 4,000-square-foot c-store facility it acquired from an area operator in Mission, Texas, in the second quarter of 2009.

Key objectives for the store remodel included:

-- Establishing Stripes' brand standards for a consistent market presence, which included external signage and building design features that are hallmarks to the Stripes brand.
-- Improve overall customer and employee experience, as well as safety and security standards, through improved lighting and a specific focus on key customer areas such as fountain, coffee, cold vault and foodservice areas.
-- Improve financial performance through more efficient and effective systems, such as a new HVAC system, building material improvements and the addition of energy efficient equipment. Interior footprint and store configuration also needed optimization to maximize the sales potential.

To reflect the company's culture of providing an enjoyable shopping experience that gives customers a feeling of fun, fresh, delicious and convenience, the store saw significant changes. Most of the interior walls were demolished, while a new 16-door walk-in cooler was installed. The company added the Laredo Taco Co. foodservice concept and seating, and installed a built-in, 32-head fountain wall with the brand's signature waterfall and Stripes cup graphics.

Behind-the-scenes changes addressed energy efficiency. The existing roof, a combination bitumen and hot mix with rock, gained a reflective roof overlay that redirects the Texas heat, resulting in lowered cooling costs. The HVAC system was upgraded, while energy-efficient lighting was added. On top of this, an energy management system was installed.
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