Bryce Barrett has owned Barrett Auto Repair and Service in Epworth for a couple of years. He purchased the business from Bruce Maahs after years of service, and the look of the building has not changed much over the last couple of decades. Thanks to a grant the business recently received, Barrett’s will be adding a new gas pump and expanding the existing building.
The $30,000 grant comes from the Iowa Renewable Fuel Retail Recovery Program. According to IowaAgriculture.gov, this grant was designed to assist retail operators of motor fuel dispensing sites or fueling stations suffering from business interruptions and income losses due to COVID-19.
“When I first bought the business,” Barrett said, “I knew I wanted to add on, but I did not think it would happen so quick.”
One new gas pump with three hoses and a credit card payment option will be available 24 hours a day. It will be full service when the shop is open for regular business hours. A diesel pump will be one of the three hoses installed.
The building’s facelift will include an awning to cover the pumps and new bays added to the auto shop for more room on the south and east sides of the building.
Both projects started on Nov. 23.
“I drew up plans of what I wanted the addition to look like last year about this time,” Barrett said. “It never played out happening so fast in my head. I figured it would take a couple of years.”
Both projects will be taking place at the same time, so the gas pumps and autobody will be closed for at least two weeks, possibly three.
Barrett believes that adding another pump that has 24-hour a day access should give his business a little boost.
“Without a doubt,” Barrett said, “I think the new gas pump will bring in more customers. Since I have taken over, I have had people mention to me how they wish they could get gas at any hour here.”
This new pump will be the third at the gas station. Barrett’s hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. to noon Sunday.