The Parking Zone – February 2020
February 28, 2020
New reports regarding local truck parking are too numerous and small in scope to report on individually. However, what each of these news items means to the underlying national problem is too significant to ignore. Below is a roundup of the latest truck parking-related news items from across the United States, ranging from proposed legislation regarding fines to new truck stops.
North Dakota town to finally break ground
After construction of a new Love’s truck stop in Valley City, N.D., was delayed last year, the city expects to break ground this year, according to News Dakota.
Off of Interstate 94 toward the eastern part of the state, Valley City plans to build a frontage road to accommodate the traffic. The new Love’s will be off of Exit 292. More than 12,000 vehicles pass through that particular part of I-94 each day, according to the report.
Florida rest area becomes truck parking only
Yup, you read that correctly. According to the Florida Department of Transportation, the car and trailer parking area at an eastbound Interstate 4 rest area will be removed.
Located two miles north of state Road 434 in Longwood, the facility will be modified to a truck-only parking area. Changes are being made to accommodate a new storm water pond.
That’s the good news. The not-so-good news is that there will not be any additional truck parking capacity. The areas where smaller vehicles park is simply being removed for the pond. Meanwhile, the truck parking area will remain with no changes, including available facilities.
Minnesota town preps for ‘large’ truck stop
The Free Press is reporting that Mankato, Minn., will be the recipient of a new “large truck stop on the east edge of town.”
The new truck stop, proposed by Steve Freyberg of Freyberg Petroleum, will be on 13 acres by Highway 14, County Road 12 and the coming extension of Adams Street.
According to The Free Press, plans show 11 trucking fueling bays and 55 truck parking spots. However, there is enough room for a total of 104 overnight truck parking spots. Freyberg is still early in the planning stages, but things appear to be looking good.
Town near the Everglades questions need for truck parking
A real estate developer wants to build a truck stop in Southwest Ranches, Fla., according to WPLG-TV Local 10. However, many in the area don’t want it.
Currently, there are 55 acres of untapped land in between U.S. 27 and the Everglades, just west of Interstate 75. The owner of the land wants to build a commercial development on the land, including a truck stop.
However, current city rules prohibit a truck stop on the land. The developer wants the city to reverse that rule. The NIMBYs are not too happy.
On the other hand, the only two comments on the WPLG’s story appear to be in favor of the truck stop.
“We shot down the proposal to put a Tractor Supply on a very remote corner of the Town – stupidity and emotions,” Bob and Rose Macfarlane wrote. “I don’t have a dog in the fight because we don’t pay any taxes or fees here, but those of you that do pay, do not complain when they go up.”
Marshall Stacks got straight to the point.
“NIMBY,” Stacks wrote. “Having a truck stop next to a highway primarily used by trucks is not a hard concept to grasp. What about Cafe 27?”
Here’s hoping the city listens to Stacks and the Macfarlanes.
New Love’s coming to Washington state
Love’s Travel Stops has been approved of a conditional use permit in Ferndale, Wash., My Ferndale News reports.
According to the report, the new truck stop will be at the intersection of Grandview Road and Portal Way off of Interstate 5. Ferndale is in the northwest corner of the state, approximately 20 miles from the Canadian border.
Love’s has a lot of infrastructure building nestled within the conditions. However, that appears to be the biggest hurdle. Otherwise, good to go.
Meanwhile, in Arizona …
Love’s is getting resistance in the city of Glendale. According to The Glendale Star, the city has been on an annexation frenzy and building new projects, including a Red Bull facility and brewery.
However, one project has residents putting their feet down and saying “no.” That project is, of course, a Love’s Travel Center. Residents are making the same tired claims: excessive traffic, noise, fumes, drugs and crime.
“I’d welcome anything other than a truck stop,” C.J. Unzen of Litchfield Park told The Glendale Star.
“Our quality of life is more important than their truck stop,” another resident told The Glendale Star.
Nothing has been proposed yet. However, when a Love’s begins the process, it will be met with strong and vocal opposition.
Love’s rejected in South Carolina
In Anderson County, S.C., a Love’s proposal has been outright rejected, according to the Independent Mail.
Love’s has proposed a new location off Interstate 85 at Exit 21. After about 50 people objected to the proposal, the Anderson County Planning Commission rejected Love’s rezoning request despite county staff recommending approval. Reasons for objecting to the truck stop were typical: traffic, environment, etc.
The Independent Mail notes that Love’s can appeal the decision or try moving the project forward “in some other form.”
Love’s rejected in Rhode Island as well
When I was younger, I was told that when it comes to dating, I can expect 100 “no”s for every one “yes.” I think Love’s Travel Stops has a similar business model.
For every 100 rejections, Love’s will open one new location. The latest rejection comes out of Hopkinton, R.I., after a 12-year legal battle with the town. Yes, this has been going on for more than a decade.
According to The Westerly Sun, the Rhode Island Superior Court upheld the Hopkinton Zoning Board’s rejection of special-use and aquifer-protection permits that Love’s needs to build a location near Exit 1 on Interstate 95.
By denying Love’s the necessary permits, Hopkinton has denied truckers in Rhode Island 145 truck parking spaces. Another reason to steer clear of Rhode Island if the truck-only tolls weren’t enough.
More Love’s news? Yup.
Apparently, Love’s Travel Stops was super busy in February. The Times-News is reporting that Bliss, Idaho, may expect a new Love’s in the not-too-distant future.
The entrance to Bliss is bleak. It is pretty much a run-down, abandoned lot and café. Kind of depressing. That may change.
Love’s has plans either later this year or in early-2021 to build a new location on the 19 acres of land. According to The Times-News, the new location near Interstate 84 will include 116 truck parking spaces. Construction is scheduled for this spring.
Based on the linked article, Bliss is in dire need of a business like Love’s. With that said, the town appears to have no problem with the truck stop moving in.
Illinois town lifts truck parking ban
Yeah, you read that right. With a unanimous vote, the Peoria City Council passed item 20-026, which allows trucks to park in certain areas of the city.
The new ordinance will allow parking of trucks that are not associated with the use on the property in certain areas under certain conditions. For the most part, each location has a five-truck limit that can be parked up to 72 hours. However, if a particular location expects to exceed those amounts, it can apply for a special-use permit.
In other words, there used to be a total truck parking ban. Now, landowners in industrial and large-scale commercial areas that want to accommodate trucks have the opportunity to do so.
This all began with people complaining about trucks parking in residential areas. Rather than double down on the ban with more enforcement and increased fines, the city found an option that pleases everybody. Simple stuff.
New Big Three locations
All Big Three truck stops – Love’s, Pilot Flying J and TravelCenters of America – opened new locations in February. In total, nearly 600 truck parking spaces were added to the infrastructure:
- Love’s at 14448 Plank Road (U.S. Highway 23, Exit 25) in Milan, Mich. (93 truck parking spaces).
- Love’s at 3175 Avenue 17 (Highway 99, Exit 157) in Madera, Calif. (95 spaces).
- Love’s at 3499 Lee Jackson Highway (Interstate 64, Exit 213) in Greenville, Va. (85 spaces).
- Love’s at 1520 E. Russworm Drive (Highway 3, Exit east of N2580 Road) in Watonga, Okla. (50 spaces).
- Love’s at 700 Ceres Blvd. (Interstate 20, Exit 15) in Flowers, Miss. (94 spaces).
- Love’s at 1811 NW Brickyard Road (Highway 75, Exit NW 17th Street) in Topeka, Kan. (75 spaces).
- PFJ at 164 FM 1927 (Interstate 20, Exit 66) in Pyote, Texas. (70 spaces).
- TA Express at 2055 South State St. (Interstate 70, Exit 56) in Salina, Utah. (Former Xpress Fuel Stop with 67 preexisting spaces).