News Brought to You by Outstanding Students From Nauset Regional High School

Nauset Horizons

Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

The Wellfleet Board of Selectmen votes to stop the controversial expansion of a Cumberland Farms located along Route 6

The current Cumberland Farms located in Welflleet right off of Route 6. Both buildings pictured would be torn down in the event of renovation. (Image courtesy of The Cape Cod Times)

The current Cumberland Farms located in Welflleet right off of Route 6. Both buildings pictured would be torn down in the event of renovation. (Image courtesy of The Cape Cod Times)

Kathryn Smith, Author

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






WELLFLEET, Mass. — In a 3-2 vote, Wellfleet selectmen halted the previously-expected expansion of a new Cumberland Farms by denying the multi-million dollar company permits to install gas tanks.

The Cumberland Farms company has hoped for several years to build onto an already existing store located along Route 6 in Wellfleet. The town of Wellfleet had hoped to bar the company from expanding due to bylaws which had been implemented in 2011. The bylaws were adopted in order to keep away chain stores which may have a “negative impact on the town’s historical and cultural relevance, unique Cape Cod rural character, and overall attractiveness,” reports Provincetown’s Wicked Local paper.

The plan has already resulted in the removal of a large, abandoned house which was located a few hundred feet behind the current Cumberlands. Additional changes to the area would include the riddance of the liquor store next door and the current convenience store in order to make room for the new, larger building.

The company challenged Wellfleet’s decision, and on December 2, the Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled in favor of Cumberland Farms by finding that the bylaw was too vague to apply.

In response, the Wellfleet Town selectmen voted in a 3-2 decision to to deny the company’s license application for two underground fuel storage tanks at the proposed location. According to the Cape Cod Times, the Cumberland Farms’ attorney, E. James Veara, says that the company plans to file an appeal in Barnstable Superior Court or Massachusetts Land Court.

The town has spent $97,000 fighting the renovation plans since 2012.

Opposition against the expansion comes in various forms. Many cite the numerous car accidents which occur within the stretch of road from the intersection leading into Wellfleet town center to the Wellfleet Post Office — at the middle of which sits the Cumberland Farms.

Complaints also include the fact that the new gas station would take away business away from the other two gas stations located directly across the street, as well as the fact that two new Cumberland Farms with gas stations just opened within the past year. Both are located less than 15 minutes away in Eastham and Provincetown.

“Cumberland Farms can be successful without a gas tank, and be a better neighbor,” said former Fire Chief Daniel Silverman.

Additionally, opposers cite the risk to the aquifer in event of a spill.

Some who take their stance strongly in the opposition have even suggested a boycott of the store if it is eventually built.

“We could respond to the company’s unfriendliness by acting unfriendly back—in the form of an organized boycott,” Cape Cod Times op-ed writer Brent Harold wrote on his personal blog at the end of 2016. “Let Cumby’s know that, however inconvenient it might be, we won’t buy a thing from them if they persist in foisting this unwanted upgrade on the town. When summer comes, we can picket to discourage summer customers.”

However, despite overwhelming and loud opposition, the plan has gained some support.

“I think it would be great,” one anonymous Wellfleet source stated. “It could bring jobs that are definitely needed and would be really convenient to have right there.”

The two selectmen who voted against the majority, Jerry Houk and Board Chairman Dennis Murphy, said that they wanted to fully review the plans before making their decision, citing  that they had only been able to see what was presented at the meeting.

Cumberland Farms, which opened its first store in 1957, has been in the process of expanding their sites and renovating their company, according to their company website. The planned renovation in Wellfleet is one of about 20 Cumberland Farms store upgrades on Cape Cod alone that have either occurred, are in process of happening, or are planned to occur relatively soon.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment

Please leave positive or constructive feedback below.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Student Life

    Step Up Day Chaos

  • Student Life

    Mock Vehicle Crash at High School Designed to Prevent Impaired Driving

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    Secrets Behind the Formation of American Elites  

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    Eat, Sleep, Jump

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    A New Life on Cape Cod

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    Sawyer Bengston and Business Ethics

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    Seas the Day!

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    A young man, struggling to keep up with his family’s constant moving, finds solace in video games and personal fitness

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    An Engineering Mastermind

  • Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted

    Student Life

    Rowing to a Better Life

News Brought to You by Outstanding Students From Nauset Regional High School
Cumberland Farms Expansion Halted