Members of the Santa Fe County Planning Commission are expected to review the positive recommendations of a hearing officer regarding plans for the construction of a travel center/truck stop that could go up at the New Mexico State Road 14 and Cerrillos Road interchange.
For months, residents living near where the proposed Pilot Flying J project would be built have packed public meetings and asserted that the facility, to be built on part of a 26-acre site, was inappropriate for the area.
Concerns have been expressed regarding potential traffic that the travel center would generate, as well as its impact on air, light, and noise pollution.
In an effort to find a resolution to the question, the commission in January appointed Santa Fe attorney Nancy Long, a former member of that body, to study the pros and cons of the project.
Long has now submitted her findings to the commission, stating that the conceptual plan for the travel center is in keeping with Santa Fe County’s Sustainable Land Development Code.
Long additionally noted that the application for the project, submitted by the land planning firm Hames W. Siebert and Associates of Santa Fe, had adequately addressed lighting, landscape, utilities, and road design issues, while also producing required environmental impact, water use, and traffic impact reports according to county standards.
The commission is scheduled to review the project’s conceptual plan on March 15.
As proposed, the travel center will comprise some 10 acres of the 26-acre site, with the rest being set aside for future retail and hotel construction.
There are currently more than 550 Pilot Flying J travel centers operating in the U.S. and Canada. Those centers are typically open 24 hours and offer a variety of fast food restaurant choices as well as laundry rooms and showers.
By Garry Boulard
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