In 2015, CST Brands’ 5,900-square-foot store in Floresville, Texas, was a prime example of the large-format, new-to-industry stores “that will help fuel the future of our company,” Chief Operating Officer Tony Bartys said at the time.
The average new-to-industry Corner Store rang up almost twice the volume of fuel and merchandise sales as a legacy store in the U.S. network, he said. That’s due in part to the expanded food offerings from the larger stores, most of them signature products baked fresh in the in-store kitchens.
“We put a lot of thought into the architecture and layout of the new stores so that customers can get in and out quickly,” Bartys said.
As customers walk through the door, they see lunch-counter seating, a colorful interior and an open design that allows for easy navigation.
“If there is a running theme here, it is that fresh food and expanded grocery offerings are an important focus at our new larger Corner Store locations,” he said. “They allow us to stand out in a very competitive c-store and QSR market.”
What the Experts Say
CST Brands introduced its new store design with a splash of every primary color throughout the store. The red and blue are dominant, but more subtle touches of yellow, green and other colors are strategically mixed into the store. The reason this works is that the chain kept the flooring and the cabinet colors fairly neutral, allowing the primary colors to explode off the walls. The most impressive part of the CST Brands offering is the Ice House, where the blue graphics inside and outside of the beer cave boldly give you a sense of cold. This, combined with the right lighting and an “everything’s bigger in Texas” attitude, makes the Ice House a huge success. —Mike Lawshe, president and CEO, Paragon Solutions