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June 25, 2013

Oologah breaks ground on $5 million grocery store

OOLOGAH —

After more than 15 years, residents of Oologah will once again have a grocery store to call their own. 
Doc’s Food Stores Inc. Country Mart will be located on South Highway 169 next door to the future location of Lakeside State Bank.
Construction is set to begin Monday and the store will be completed in November before the Thanksgiving holiday, according to Doc’s Food Stores President Jim Brown.
Crossland Construction Company of Tulsa will provide the general contracting as well as design-build and construction management services.
“(Crossland) will turn the store over to us Nov. 1 and hopefully we’ll be open by Nov. 11,”  Brown said. 
The 19,000 square foot Country Mart will sit back facing Highway 169 south in a four-acre lot with additional room on the north side of the building for expansion. 
“Everything worked out between RCIDA and the City of Oologah, so here we come,” he said.
Oologah Mayor Jerry Holland said town board members began talking about the need for a grocery store after John Wylie, publisher of the Oologah Lake Leader, had been pushing the idea for years.
“Finally we became associated with RCIDA and received funds for the store through a tax increment financing (TIF),” Holland said. “RCIDA stayed with us through thick and thin. We had to work out some tax issues and overcome the issue of not receiving any sales tax from the project until the store was paid off.”
Holland said the benefits far exceed what the taxes would have been and Oologah’s original tax base will stay the same after construction is completed.
To determine which grocery store would be built in Oologah, Holland and town board members visited area food markets, talked with different owners and witnessed first hand how each store was run.
“The board members were well educated on this project,” he said. “I want to thank (board members) and the community for their support from the beginning.”
Other Country Mart locations include Bixby, Coweta and Glenpool.

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