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Trucking firm may generate hundreds of jobs in Lathrop
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LATHROP – A major trucking company that wants to construct a logistics center in the North Harlan Industrial area overcame its first major hurdle this week.

During its second appearance before the Lathrop City Council Tuesday night, the project received a unanimous vote which cleared the sale of wastewater treatment capacity to the business that is projected to generate hundreds of jobs. The amount of that sewer capacity, in industry jargon, is 15 interceptor service units or ISUs. In comparison, the Save Mart project farther south on Harlan Road acquired 20 to 30 ISUs with some of that intended for future development of the company’s other property on the west side of the road. That remnant was the result of the Save Mart land being split when that portion of Harlan at Lathrop Road was re-aligned to resolve the traffic issue created by the construction of the 1,000-unit Stonebridge residential subdivision.

At the project’s first appearance before the council on Jan. 6, several residents spoke against it citing a number of negative impacts that the major trucking outfit might have on the city such as increased truck traffic in the town’s major thoroughfares. There was also some concern among the council members as to whether the trucking business offered the city the best bang for the buck in terms of generating tax revenues for the city, as opposed to allocating the sewer capacity to another type of business such as a restaurant perhaps.

But this time around, the company had people such as Mike Locke, president of San Joaquin Partnership, extolling the economic virtues of the trucking project and urging the council to approve the sale of the wastewater treatment capacity that will get the project going. This council action though, staff report qualified, is neither an approval nor denial of the potential project.

However, the valid concerns brought up by the residents and council members such as truck traffic remain and will be addressed when the project gets to the stage when an environment impact report will be required.

The sewer allocation requested is not for Gordon Trucking but for Cal S&S, its parent company. Gordon Trucking will lease the property from Cal S&S.

The proposed construction project is located in the industrial area along North Harlan Road north of Pets and Pals and Stonebridge residential subdivision to the south of Roth Road.

The third-generation family-owned trucking business was founded in 1946 by Jay Gordon as Gordon Fast Freight serving western Washington, according to GTI’s Director of Terminal Operations in Modesto, Jim Dingman, during his presentation to the council. The company’s original client and product shipped was Lucky Lager Beer. In 1980, the founder’s son, Larry, and his wife Virginia opened Gordon Trucking Inc. and with GFF, managed 50 trucks. In 1984, Larry and Virginia purchased GFF from Larry’s father, which merged the two companies under the name GTI.