After a plan to build a new Dollar General store in Wellsville came to an end because it was mired in controversy, the discount retailer will now open a store in an existing building in the borough.

The Goodlettsville, Tenn.-based discount retailer will move into the former Sunrise Discount Market at 55 York St. once an expansion and renovation project is complete, said Adam Hagerman, a retail specialist with Bennett Williams in York City.

The 5,525-square-foot building was sold to MBC Development LP of Schuylkill Haven, Bennett Williams announced Wednesday.

The expansion project includes building an addition that would increase the store to 9,000 square feet, Hagerman said.

Retrofit: The renovation work to retrofit the existing building includes putting on a new roof and installing new utilities, he added.

"Basically, they'll rebuild the inside," Hagerman said.

Work is under way, and construction is slated to take two to three months to complete.

Once finished, the store will employ five to 10 people, Hagerman said.

Dollar General had hoped to build a new store in Wellsville about two years ago but was met with opposition from residents who feared the building would not be in keeping with the town's historical buildings.

The proposal called for roughly 2.6 acres of land in the 200 block of Main Street near Community Street to be developed to accommodate a 7,500-square-foot store.

The property is farmland and is within Wellsville's Historical District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Some residents also feared the site might hold archaeological treasures, and the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission had recommended a survey be conducted. The survey found only fragments of artifacts in a 5-by-5-foot section of the field.

John Bergdoll, a Wellsville resident who was opposed to the new construction, said residents aren't opposed to this project since the store is not in the historical district and will be in an existing building.

"I think this is the best case scenario they are going with," he said.

The discount retailer has 10,000 stores across 40 states, including 434 locations in Pennsylvania, according to the company website.

It earns $14.8 billion in sales annually, according to the website.

-- Reach Greg Gross at ggross@yorkdispatch.com.