Plans on the table for a 24-hour gas station and convenience store in neighbors backyards

Neighbors fight construction in Fruit Cove

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — Several residnets in Fruit Cove Estates are fighting back against a plan to open a gas station and 24-hour convenience store next to their neighborhood.

“24 pumps, 24 hours a day, and you’ve got about a half a dozen people right along there that are trying to go to sleep at night.” Harry Fairfield told Action News Jax, saying he wants the plan dismissed. “When I bought this house, before I bought it, I checked to see what the zoning was to make sure this kind of thing wouldn’t happen.”


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The land is currently zoned as residential, but the landowner, First Coast Energy, has a proposal to change it to commercial so it can get the project started.

That project would include a 12-pump Daily’s gas station with 24 fuel stations, a 7,000 sq. ft. convenience store, and a car wash.

The land is now mostly grass and trees, with an old abandoned tree nursery. First Coast Energy says it plans to keep a lot of the greenery.

Neighbors say the plan is also to change Fruit Cove Estates entrance, to widen the streets so tanker trucks can get to the gas station.

The way the property is zoned right now, gas pumps are not allowed. First Coast Energy is asking the St. John's County Planning and Zoning Agency Board to change that.

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There was supposed to be a meeting on Sept. 19 to hear the company’s proposal.

But the meeting was changed after the gas company got word that only four out of the seven board members could attend.

We reached out to all seven members on the board, asking how they plan to vote at the next meeting, but they did not get back to us.

The next meeting is scheduled for Oct. 3 at 1:30 p.m.

The Board of County Commissioners will get the final say at its Nov. 7 meeting.