Sunday, March 29, 2020

Shell at Holleman and Harvey Mitchell

From June 2013 by author. This post was actually planned to go up in late 2014, but it got pushed back for reasons.

My little corner of the world got two big upgrades in 2004: the completion of Jones-Butler Road in November of that year (connecting the "Marion Pugh Road" segment between North Dowling and Harvey Mitchell Parkway to I&GN Road at Rock Prairie Road West) brought a new avenue to access Rock Prairie Road, and a new modern gas station built at a small field at the intersection of Holleman and Harvey Mitchell, which at the time was a sleepy little terminus of a segment that was almost never driven on...why go straight across the steep railroad crossing and make an unprotected left, when we could head down Wellborn and take a long ramp directly to FM 2818?

This "new modern gas station" was a Shell and featured a Wendy's, with one of the first Rattlers'-branded gas stations in town. Rattlers' Country Store as it was named originally, was a local operation that featured clean, well-run stores with their own distinctive branding. There was a car wash (which I don't think I ever used), a Subway (2048 Holleman West, opened 2005), and Holleman Cleaners (2046 Holleman West), a small dry cleaning operation. Neither of these connected to each other like Wendy's and Rattlers' did (Rattlers' has the address of 2050 Holleman, with Wendy's being 2052, but known to use 2050 sometimes).

There were a few minor changes that went on with the gas station. The Wendy's remodeled in the early 2010s but never saw its exterior sign change—but in the mid-2010s, the gas station signage received a revamp, adding electronic signage and a new Wendy's logo (an old "movable numbers" board closer to the ground was changed to just read "SCANTRONS"). The car wash went away sometime around 2009 and was replaced by a building, soon occupied (after several months) by one "Liquor Mart" (2054 Holleman Drive West).

The Rattlers' changed logos at some point (dropping the "Country Store" branding) and briefly adding a "Froggies Yogurt" inside (replacing a small kiosk with foil-wrapped tacos). Froggies went away shortly after the Rattlers' chain was sold to Sunoco (which owned Stripes) in 2016. This meant that the gas station and the new Stripes on the other side of Holleman were now under common ownership.

In Febraury 2018, the Shell became a Sunoco. This was likely due to a contract regarding Sunoco stations being kept when Sunoco officially sold its gas stations to 7-Eleven a month or so prior, which meant that the Rattlers' was officially owned by 7-Eleven. Two years later, Holleman Cleaners (which had closed down in fall 2019) turned into "Elevated CBD + Smoke". Rattlers' never converted to Stripes or 7-Eleven, and by 2020, Rattlers' closed down around midnight while the Stripes across the street maintained a 24-hour operation, giving it an edge in business. The Wendy's closed in the fall of 2020 (see the first update below) and the main Rattlers went out with it, taking down the entire gas station with it. Only Subway and Elevated remained. As of this writing, the station seems to have come back to life. The Shell name and canopy has been restored (though the canopy just has the symbol instead of the writing, a change that came about starting in the mid-to-late 2010s), the facade was repainted maroon and white, with the convenience store being called "Campus Corner", and the Wendy's also being repainted and altered to be a Burger Mojo. We'll see how it goes this time... 

UPDATE 10-14-20: Wendy's, which has been in the store since around January 2005 (give or take a month), permanently closed in or around September 30, 2020. The reason for this closure is still yet unknown. Also rewrote some minor parts in the article.
UPDATE 12-02-20: A check on December 1st revealed that sometime in November, Rattlers (and the entire gas station component with it) has closed. Elevated CBD + Smoke and Subway continue to operate, while Burger Mojo is planned to go into the former Wendy's.
UPDATE 01-21-21: The station has since reverted to Shell with a new convenience store and restaurant. The main description has been rewritten with the title altered to remove "Sunoco".
UPDATE 02-04-21: Campus Corner has opened in the last few days. The d├ęcor is identical to Rattlers'.
UPDATE 03-04-2021: Burger Mojo officially opened 3/3/21 as a 24 hour location. The same day, the Stripes across the street was rebranded as a 7-Eleven.
UPDATE 09-19-2021: Some changes to mention how Rattlers was sold to Sunoco, as well as integrating the 7-Eleven page posted earlier this year.