Nearly three dozen people attended a presentation by a representative of Love’s Travel Stops in the Grand County Water and Sewer conference room on May 9.
The group was composed of mostly residents of Spanish Valley whose homes would be in close proximity to the proposed truck stop.
Several members of the San Juan County Planning and Zoning Committee and Economic Development Department were also in attendance.
Love’s representative Kym Van Dyke displayed a schematic of the proposed facility which would include not only fueling facilities, but 53 parking spaces for semi-trucks, a convenience store and other amenities related to truck stops.
Van Dyke said that a wall would separate the truck stop from nearby homes.
Love’s requires a 500-foot offset from residential dwellings. The facility would be in operation 24/7 and would employ 25 to 40 personnel, with 75 percent of those being full time positions.
The local residents had many concerns and questions regarding the proposal, the main one being, why this is the place Love’s found suitable for the facility.
“Why couldn’t it be located further south away from current residences,” was the main question.
Van Dyke explained that Love’s has certain criteria for locating their truck stops and that this site was the best fit. He felt that they had done their due diligence in site selection. The selected area is within a zone designated as commercial.
Another question from the group is why public scoping had not been conducted prior to Love’s making a site selection.
The site is located on School and Institutional Trust Lands (SITLA). Bryan Torgerson represented SITLA and also fielded questions.
SITLA does not have the mandate to conduct environmental studies for their projects, as do Federal Agencies. That would require public pre-scoping.
Residents asked if this is “a done deal” as it appeared to many that it is. No clear-cut answer was given for this question.
The bottom line is that residents living in close proximity to the proposed truck stop, as well as those further away in Spanish Valley, stated that establishing a truck stop in the location would not only decrease the quality of life in the area, but would in fact “ruin” the valley. Their concerns include noise, air and light pollution, and an increase in illegal activities.
Additional comments regarding the establishment of the truck stop can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.