The Parking Zone – May 2018

May 31, 2018

Tyson Fisher


Every week, there are several news articles across the nation related to truck parking. They range from a state department of transportation closing a rest area to local city councils preventing the opening of a truck stop.

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.

California town preparing for new truck stop

In California, truckers traveling on Highway 99 between San Francisco and Los Angeles can add another potential stop on their list. The city of Tulare, Calif., is processing an environmental impact report for a 13.63-acre Pilot Flying J, according to the Visalia Times Delta.

If you think that spot is already on your list, that’s because it probably is. A Love’s location already exists at the proposed spot at Paige Avenue and Highway 99. Too many cities won’t allow one truck stop, but Tulare doesn’t mind two. Tip of the cap to the city of Tulare.

Love’s also reports it added 53 spaces to those at its existing Tulare truck stop.

Despite resident opposition, truck stop plan moves forward in Montana city

Love’s dodged a bullet in Ramsay, Mont., recently after city officials rejected bids from residents to establish emergency, interim zoning regulations. If emergency zoning was granted, the truck stop would have been delayed and possibly put to rest entirely.

According to a Montana Standard report, the proposed Love’s location will be established off of Interstate 90, approximately 7 miles from Butte. Most of the time, residents win this argument, but in Ramsay, city officials gave the win to a much-needed truck stop. For now…

Santa Fe, N.M., officially kills Pilot Flying J’s plans for new location

In what may be the most controversial truck stop of the year, the city of Santa Fe, N.M., has ended any hope for a new truck stop. The county commissioners’ final vote marks the end of several months of debate from residents opposed to the truck stop.

The controversy accused the city of being anti-trucking. In an opinion piece in the Santa Fe New Mexican, a columnist pointed out that opposition to the truck stop had nothing to do about trucking:

“I implore Anaya to consider the fear of the residents, local schools and established businesses who recognized that the proposed location of this truck stop represents an existential threat to their safety, well-being and security,” Michael Pschorr wrote.

Are we talking about a truck stop or a biker bar for the Hells Angels?

South Carolina mayor kicks off second term with truck stop plans

Mac Bagnal, mayor of Summerton, S.C., has recently begun his second term. Wearing a hat that reads “Make Summerton Great Again” in a Manning Live article, Bagnal is ready to get to business. One of his plans: A new truck stop off of Interstate 95 offering more truck parking.

According to Manning Live’s report, a hotel lot has been vacant for several years. The mayor recently heard that “a new group” has purchased the 15-acre lot and plans to build a truck stop. As of press time, who the “new group” remains a mystery.

Bad news north of the border

Meanwhile, in Canada, Manitoba Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler is considering shutting down highway rest areas. According to a CBC report, a review has already began for the Pine Grove rest area, the only one between Winnipeg and the Ontario boundary on the Trans-Canada Highway.

In addition to local businesses off the highway not too happy about the potential increase in truck traffic, the possible closure could pose a real safety problem: fatigued drivers. Many motorists use rest areas to get … wait for it … rest!

Who is happy about this? Private truck stops and gas stations that will surely get an increase in business if this happens.

Truck parking resistance in Charleston, S.C.

More than 80 residents of the neighborhood Beresford Creek Landing in Charleston, S.C., wrote a dissenting letter to the county supervisor about a proposed Pilot Flying J truck stop. The Daniel Island News reports that residents are upset about the already hazardous and congested traffic in the neighborhood. Of course, they claim a new truck stop would exacerbate those problems.

Other concerns include protected wetlands on the site. To ease worries about traffic, city officials have already planned for a potential widening of the main street near the site. Of course, this isn’t enough. I’ll keep you updated on the progress.

New Love’s locations

In April, Pilot Fly J had all the new locations while Love’s had none. For May, the roles have been reversed. Here’s where Love’s has recently set up shop:

  • 251344 Highway 70, Randlett, Okla. (59 spaces)
  • 1903 Camino Del Llano (Interstate 25), Belen, N.M. (62 spaces)
  • 7046 Highway 1 (Interstate 49), Boyce, La. (55 spaces)
  • 5614 U.S. Highway 59 North, Lufkin, Texas (94 spaces)
  • 325 Veterans Drive (intersection of Interstate 69 and State Route 260), Hanson, Ky. (63 spaces)

That’s a total of 333 new trucking spaces from Love’s alone in May.