The Parking Zone – October 2019
November 1, 2019
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.
Milton, Wis., parking ban proposal passes
In the last Parking Zone, I mentioned that Milton, Wis., was considering a truck parking ban. Well, it passed.
Soon after it passed, Land Line Associate Editor Mark Schremmer discovered that Milton is the home of Dakota “Bubba” Cadd. You can read about his heartwarming story here.
Popular Pennsylvania rest area closed indefinitely
The overwhelming majority of truck parking spaces is provided by the private sector. However, there are some public sector spaces, i.e., rest areas, which are on busy interstates.
One of those rest areas is the Grantville rest area on Interstate 81 nearly mile marker 79 in Pennsylvania. According to WHTM-TV, the rest area on both sides is closed and will not open until sometime next summer.
WHTM’s report does a great job giving the trucker’s perspective on the matter. The article highlights the importance of truck parking and the struggle that comes along with it. Very well done.
The good news is that the closure is due to a complete makeover. A makeover that includes more truck parking spaces once it is completed.
Truck Parking Near Me adds parking near Chicagoland
According to a news release from Truck Parking Near Me, that truck parking provider has announced the opening of overnight and monthly truck parking in Gary, Ind., and Bellwood, Ill.
The Gary parking facility is at 1500 N. Colfax Ave. and is a short six-minute drive from Interstate 94, north of the Pilot Truck Stop and five minutes from state Road 912. A driver needing to get to downtown Chicago for a pick up or delivery, the Colfax location is only 40 minutes from downtown Chicago. The parking lot is lit, gated and requires a reservation for daily parking or contract for monthly.
The Chicago parking facility is near Chicago/O’Hare at 220 N. 25th Ave., Bellwood, Ill., and, like the Gary location, requires a reservation. The Chicago location is also lit, gated and requires a reservation for daily parking or contract for monthly.
Find out more at TruckParkingNearMe.com.
Toledo, Iowa, bans truck parking
The Toledo city council recently passed an ordinance addressing parking of large vehicles, according to The Toledo Chronicle.
Changes to the parking regulations include adding a limit for trucks, trailers, motor homes and boats on city streets. The limit allows parking only for a reasonable time “to load or unload passengers, freight or other merchandise.” Other than that, parking on city streets is banned.
The ban also included parking long term in public lots and spaces. Furthermore, trucks cannot park in a residential areas for more than two hours. Exceptions apply only when loading or unloading.
According to The Toledo Chronicle, the ordinance was approved after a public hearing where no comments were heard. A second and third reading of the changes were waived. Four councilmembers voted for the changes, with one member absent.
Here’s a new one: a video on truck parking.
AllTruckJobs.com recently published a video on YouTube called “How to Find Truck Parking When the Spaces are Full.” I’ll just leave it here:
What are your thoughts on the tutorial?
Indiana city vetoes truck parking ban
You read that correctly. The Richmond common council struck down an ordinance that would ban trucks from parking in private driveways, according to the Richmond Palladium-Item.
Even more surprising is the fact the vote was an overwhelming 8-1 against the ban. As if this is not strange enough, the council vote comes after the planning commission voted unanimously to recommend the council pass the ordinance.
An important section from the article:
“(Councilmember Bruce) Wissel previously said that Walmart, Petro and Love’s truck stops would allow trucks to stay there overnight, but one opponent said he made a phone call to Walmart and was told their truck would be towed if left overnight. Furthermore, truck stops would not be held responsible for any damage to trucks left at stops. This individual pointed out that if local truck drivers were forced to park at local truck stops, it would take away spots from truck drivers travelling across the country looking for a safe place to rest.”
Outstanding job by the council for not only hearing the other side but actually listening and adjusting accordingly.
Love’s closer to Ramsay, Mont., location
This is another reoccurring story: Love’s uphill battle in Ramsay. It’s a classic case of a proposed truck stop getting the NIMBY treatment. However, things are going in Love’s direction in this scenario.
Recently, the Montana Department of Revenue ruled that Love’s can obtain a liquor license, the Montana Standard reports. This seems much ado about nothing, but those against the truck stop were hoping a rejection would set Love’s back.
The latest attempt to derail a new Love’s location has failed. At this point, a new truck stop in Ramsay seems inevitable. However, I suspect another attempt to stop it will occur in the not-too-distant future.
Another study published
If there is one thing government agencies absolutely love, it is studies. Should we do this? Get a study. Are we sure we should do this? Get another study. The results are the same but … another study.
On Oct. 8, the Minnesota DOT released its statewide truck parking study. The study found that the average day consists of “more than 26,000 truck trips in Minnesota and only 4,846 truck parking spaces available,” according to a news release.
Of those parking spaces, more than 85% are privately owned truck stops. This is information that could have been found four years ago in Jason’s Law Truck Parking Survey results. Speaking of that, there’s going to be a second Jason’s Law parking study. It never ends.
A ‘boisterous’ NIMBY crowd in New York town
A new proposed development project in Kent includes a truck stop, truck wash, truck repair, two hotels, an indoor waterpark, a restaurant and a convention center. It’s the truck stop that filled a Kent courtroom with nearly 100 people.
The following is from The Examiner News:
“People here are desperately afraid of this project,” said Eileen Civitello, who has organized residents to sign a petition opposing zoning variances for the project. “We are all terrified that this (project) will happen in the dead of night. This project got so far along, and we didn’t know about it.”
(Planning board chairman Phil) Tolmach told Civitello, “I’m glad we woke them (the town) up. Maybe they’ll pay more attention in the future.”
Now that the town is “woke,” expect major delays or a cancellation of this proposed truck stop.
Minnesota town looks forward to new truck stop
Looks like “a large truck stop” is poised to set up shop in Mankato, Minn., according to the Mankato Free Press.
In fact, two “trucking-related firms” are about nearing construction at Adams Street and Blue Earth county Road 12. According to the report, the only hurdle left is a state economic development grant, suggesting no NIMBY hurdles getting in the way.
If the grant is awarded, consider it a done deal.
Another local parking ban ordinance passes
This one takes place in Snohomish County, Wash. According to a report by The Daily Herald, the county council voted 4-1 to pass a new parking limit of 12 hours within a 24-hour time frame for large trucks.
Oddly, the article mentions the following incident:
“Over the summer of 2017, three local teens died and another was injured when the car they were in crashed into a semi trailer parked facing the wrong direction along Alderwood Mall Parkway. Authorities said excessive speed, an inexperienced driver and marijuana use were factors in the early-morning collision, but said the semi was parked in a legal zone.”
It seems the parked truck wasn’t a major factor, yet it needs to be mentioned?
The good news is that this particular ban has a sunset clause effective Oct. 1, 2020, to addresses any potential unintended consequences. This is something rarely seen in similar bans happening nationwide.
Florida town expects large truck stop
The Tampa Bay Times is reporting “a major makeover” for a Race Trac fueling station at the intersection of Interstate 75 and state Road 50 in Brooksville, Fla.
According to the report, the county planning and zoning commission voted unanimously to rezone property for the county’s “first full-blown truck stop.” Plans include an 8,100-square-foot convenience story, six truck fueling stations and a truck parking area. It’s unknown how many spaces will be available, but we’ll take anything at this point.
New Big Three locations
In October all of the Big Three truck stops – Love’s, Pilot Flying J and TravelCenters of America – opened locations throughout the country. In total, they added more than 400 truck parking spaces to the infrastructure:
- Love’s off of state Route 49 in Edon, Ohio (111 truck parking spaces).
- Love’s off of Interstate 94 in St. Clair, Mich. (104 spaces).
- Love’s off of Highway 10 West in Missoula, Mont. (58 spaces).
- Love’s off of Interstate 20 in Eutaw, Ala. (96 spaces).
- PFJ at 4200 W. Highway 302 in Odessa, Texas (15 spaces).
- TA Express (formerly Oasis Mart) at 5490 N. Highway 146 in Baytown, Texas (60 spaces).