Hellam Township residents strongly criticize proposed Route 30 truck stop

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A proposed truck stop in Hellam Township has drawn heavy criticism from residents concerned about its impact on the local environment – and on the township itself.

Love’s Travel Stops, a national chain of truck stops and convenience stores, offered a truck stop on approximately 35 acres of land off Highway 30 near the Horn Farm Center.

While the company has seven stops in Pennsylvaniaincluding adjacent Cumberland and Dauphin counties, it would be his first in York County.

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But there is still a long way to go before any construction is launched. Love’s would need to obtain a waiver from the Hellam Township Zoning Board, as the proposed stop is in the Kreutz Creek Interchange Area. A truck stop is not a viable use of this property.

Additionally, Love’s has yet to enter into a valid sales agreement with the owner of one of the parcels of land, according to zoning officer Rachel Vega. This would delay the project by at least three months.

But locals are already criticizing the potential truck stop.

“The only people who would benefit from a truck stop here are the owners of the truck stop,” wrote residents Phyllis Koster and Robert Oughton in a letter to the supervisory board. “The people of Hellam Township would pay the price.”

Koster and other residents also raised the prospect of environmental impacts. In 2018, portions of Kreutz Creek Road flooded after rains.

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“This area has had very many flooding issues over the past few years,” Koster said. “Kreutz Creek runs through the proposed site for the roadhouse, and the amount of impermeable surface needed for the roadhouse would compound the flooding problem that already exists.”

In a lengthy letter to the Board of Supervisors, Hellam resident and environmental advisory board co-chair Judith Mueller also voiced her opposition to the potential truck stop.

“We can capitalize on the remarkable assets we have to develop an outdoor agricultural destination (and economy) in our canton. Indeed, we are already such a destination,” Mueller wrote. “A truck stop is completely at odds with – and detrimental to – this much healthier vision for our community.”

The proposed truck stop would wreak havoc on the Horn Farm Center for Agricultural Education, Mueller wrote.

“Please listen to the people who live here. We don’t want this,” Mueller wrote.

The Horn Farm Center also opposed the truck stop in a statement on its website.

“The trucking trade that will benefit Love’s will produce the unwanted by-product of noise and air pollution, along with increased traffic, negatively affecting the quality of life for surrounding residents – human and non-human alike,” says the press release.

“Commercial development of our neighboring farmland conflicts with Horn Farm Center’s efforts to preserve and protect Hellam Township farmland through its conservation easement with the York Farm & Natural Lands Trust.”

A spokesperson for Love’s did not respond to requests for comment.

– Contact Matt Enright via email at [email protected] or via Twitter at @Matthew_Enright.

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