Construction is well underway on the new Milton Martin Toyota dealership in Oakwood, one of several changes to the landscape in that part of the city.
Grading has consumed much of the Toyota project since work started last year on the 20-acre site between Interstate 985 and Ga. 13/Atlanta Highway.
But building construction is now taking place.
“We are finally going vertical,” dealership spokeswoman Emily Hayes said last week.
Projected completion is August with move-in during September, but “we will know a more certain target date following a construction meeting on-site Tuesday with the architect and contractor,” she said.
The dealership isn’t the only change to the once largely wooded area south of I-985’s Exit 17 and north of Ga. 53/Mundy Mill Road.
Grading has started behind the Quik-Trip convenience store off Mundy Mill on a new, larger QuikTrip.
In an effort QuikTrip calls “scrape and build,” the Tulsa, Okla.-based convenience store chain is planning to build the new store while operating the current one. Once the new store is built and ready to go, the old one will be razed.
“That way, it’s a seamless transition,” spokesman Mike Thornbrugh has said. “We never shut the existing store down until the new one’s ready.”
The new QuikTrip will be a “Generation 3” model, similar to the one recently built off Ga. 369/Jesse Jewell Parkway at U.S. 129/Limestone Parkway and across from New Holland Market.
“It’s a completely different look both outside and inside,” Thornbrugh said.
The Oakwood store, which will have both front and side entrances, will be 5,700 square feet in size, compared to about 4,200 square feet in the current building, he said.
It could open in May or June, Thornbrugh said.
Work on the store has been timed with construction of a new road, Milton Martin Toyota Way, between Ga. 53 and Ga. 13 and connecting Curt Lance Way.
Some work still needs to be done at the Ga. 13 and Ga. 53 intersections, but “everything in between is essentially completed” in the $2.4 million project, Oakwood City Manager Stan Brown said.
“There will be some land in there that will be primed for hopefully some good retail/restaurant-type development,” Brown has said.
Tim Evans, the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce’s vice president for economic development, said he believes the new dealership will help ignite growth in that area.
But also helping forge change, he said, is the Northeast Georgia Health System’s new Corporate Plaza, a support center that could house as many 500 employees. The building on Frontage Road is directly across the interstate from the dealership.
“It’s a fast-growing area with great transportation access,” Evans said.