Buc-ee’s plans mega retail store, giant gas station in Florida

The convenience-store chain, based south of the Houston metro area, is known for its massive operations that offer huge retail stores, dozens of gas pumps and pristine restrooms. The store will be 50,000 square feet in size and offer 80 fueling positions.

By comparison, RaceTrac stores are typically 6,000 square feet with 18 to 24 fueling positions, while Wawa stores are generally 4,000 to 6,000 square feet and can accommodate eight fuel dispensers, according to their websites.

Buc-ee’s, with its cute beaver mascot, colossal size and focus on clean commodes has led to a cult-like following. It also emphasizes fast, friendly service and keeping its many items in stock.

“Buc-ee’s stores are plain fun,” Jeff Nadalo wrote, Buc-ees General Council. “Buc-ee’s stores are well-known for offering an extensive selection of freshly prepared food, ample jerky options, as well as numerous snacks, including various candies, nuts, and other treats.”

The chain is also known for its catchy billboard messages, such as "A Bigger Kolache? I Never Sausage a Thing" and "Eat Here, Get Gas."

Aside from its vast selection, Buc-ee’s stores also cater to the places they serve, so expect a certain amount of Florida-centric offerings.

“Buc-ee’s will offer products that are specifically tailored to the customers living in and traveling through the Fort Myers area,” Nadalo wrote.

In this region, the closest operation to come anywhere close in scale may be the Love’s Travel Stop at the Bayshore Road interchange in North Fort Myers. Still, that one has a store a fraction of the size and to some extent caters to truckers.

By contrast, Buc-ee’s doesn’t allow big rigs.

Buc-ee’s, which offers at least 32 stores in Texas, is venturing outside the Lone Star State for the first time with plans for stores in Fort Myers and Daytona Beach. But why Florida?

“Buc-ee’s has focused on building in Fort Myers and Daytona because these areas are proven and established destinations for travelers,” Nadalo wrote.