By Stan Welch
On Tuesday the Anderson County Planning Commission met. One of the projects they reviewed and approved will significantly impact the White Plains community, while reshaping the Hwy. 8/I-85 interchange. Love’s Travel Stops, an extensive chain of truck stop facilities in the Southeast, intends to locate a facility on the west side of the interchange, just past the southern on ramp to the interstate.
The facility will comprise 13 acres, including a variety of services and amenities, including a fenced dog park and a fast food vendor with a drive through window. The Love’s Travel Stop and Country Store will include a convenience store of almost 12,000 square feet, while a truck tire shop, capable of doing light repairs on big rigs, will consume an additional 11,000 square feet. There will be gas pumps for regular travelers, a separate diesel fueling plaza for bigger vehicles, and overnight parking for the long haulers.
Recreational vehicles will be able to access a waste water dump station. That will be made possible by the construction of a lift station to move the waste water from the facility across highway 8 to lines owned and operated by ReWa. Under the plans approved by the commission, Duke Power will provide electricity and Powdersville Water will provide the potable water supply.
Aside from the store’s commercial impact on the area, which is also the site of a 200,000 + square foot speculation building constructed by the county on the northeastern side of the interchange, the addition of several turn lanes and traffic signals will accelerate the transformation of what has been for decades a fairly sleepy, rural area. Using the interchange itself as the focus, commercial, sizable tracts are for sale on every corner of the cloverleaf. On the southeastern side, a large tract has recently been logged and cleared, and another tract is available on the northwestern corner, where the southbound interstate exits onto Hwy. 8.
Love’s will be responsible for installing the turn lanes, as well as pass through lanes on Highway 8. Additional traffic signals at the northbound exit and entrance ramps are likely. How these changes will impact the Highway 8 overpass remains to be seen, since that bridge is frequently patched.