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'I think it sucks': Residents irate with town’s only gas station set to close

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Wiarton’s only gas station is turning off the pumps next month, and residents aren’t happy about it.

“What do I think about it? I think it’s terrible. We are a town of seniors, and a lot of us don’t drive out of town,” said Wiarton senior, Shirley Hunter.

The pumps at Wiarton’s lone gas station will fall silent on Dec. 13. Parent company, Suncor, called the move a “business decision” based upon “an annual review.” The impending closure leaves Wiarton, a town of 2,000 residents nestled along Georgian Bay, with no place to fill up.

“I think it sucks. It’s the only gas station around and it’s going to be hard to find some place else,” said Wiarton resident, Nikki.

Long time Wiarton resident Janice Sim added, “I think it’s terrible. We really need this gas station here. I don’t know what we’re going to do without it. It’s a long way to drive to get gas anywhere else.”

Shirley Hunter is upset that Wiarton, Ont.'s only gas station is closing on Dec. 13, 2023. She says Wiarton is a town of seniors and most of them don’t drive out of town, but now, they'll have no choice. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)The closest gas stations to Wiarton are now in Hepworth and Ferndale, located approximately 15 minutes away.

“I think it’s very sad for the people of North Bruce Peninsula. We are limited in our access to gas stations, Uber and public transit. It’s got to stop somewhere,” said Karen, a local resident.

The Town of South Bruce Peninsula said they’re meeting with Suncor officials shortly to try and find a solution that keeps Wiarton’s lone gas pumps pumping.

“With over 2.5 million visitors to Bruce County annually and over 60 per cent of them travelling through Wiarton to visit different areas of the Bruce Peninsula, this gas station is a core service and economic driver for the local economy,” explained Danielle Edwards, with the Town of South Bruce Peninsula.

Wiarton, Ont.'s only gas station is closing on Dec. 13, 2023. The next closest gas station is 15 minutes away. (Scott Miller/CTV News London)She added, “We have heard from other oil and gas companies inquiring about the site and will forward them to the appropriate contacts at Suncor accordingly. Once we learn more, we can then plan to implement an investment attraction strategy, if necessary.”

In the meantime, residents like Shirley Hunter will literally be hoarding gas, in preparation for Wiarton’s gas pumps falling silent in three weeks.

“I keep coming and filling up so by the time it closes, I’ll be full. I don’t go out of town, so I hope it’s going to last until the end, or it stays. I don’t know,” she said. 

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