As the summer season approaches, some Wawa stores have been forced to temporarily close or reduce their working hours due to staff shortages. The convenience store chain is now in the process of hiring 5,000 new employees in its 860 stores located in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, Washington D. C., and Florida over the next three months. In recent years, Wawa has opened several new locations in Center City.
Lori Bruce, a spokeswoman for Wawa, stated that due to the pandemic and other operational uncertainties, their long-term plans for certain stores are no longer viable. The company is also looking to hire up to 2,000 new employees at its 250 New Jersey stores in the next three months. ABC 7News spoke to Chris Donatelli, the owner of the property where Wawa was located, who said that they were leaving due to problems in the neighborhood. In order to address its staffing issues, Wawa has announced its plan to hire 5,000 full-time and part-time employees in its stores.
Although the chain has not specified how many stores have been affected by this change, a Somers Point location that closed earlier this week is expected to resume full operations by 6 a.m. Residents and neighbors near Wawa on 19th and Market reported that the store was a nuisance late at night before it ended overnight hours. Wawa also closed its store on Ninth and South Streets in the fall and recently closed a North Philadelphia branch at 1300-14 East Erie Avenue. A crowd of night panhandlers often crowded the entrance to East Market Wawa, customers and employees said.
On Monday, Wawa will stop operating 24 hours a day at another of its Center City locations, with doors now closed at its 20th Street and Hamilton location in Franklintown at 11 p.m. A sign with a closing date of June 6 was also seen on the Wawa next to the Columbia Heights subway station. Pennsylvania-based Wawa operates virtual stores in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Florida and Washington D. C.