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Biggest pushback on growth in 30 years
Del Webb residents were concerned the change in CenterPoint plans would significantly increase truck traffic on both Lathrop Road (shown in photo) and Airport Way. - photo by Bulletin file photo

The depth of the frustration Del Webb at Woodbridge residents had with a change in the neighboring CenterPoint Business Park’s plans that would have “temporarily” dumped 816 truck trips on a daily basis literally at the 1,420-home neighborhood’s back door was reflected in a multi-page document handed to officials at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

A petition opposing the change that would have allowed CenterPoint to develop and market a parcel as a 486 space truck parking yard by extending a private road to intersect with Airport Way at a signalized intersection roughly midway between Lathrop Road and Daisywood Drive contained 1,192 signatures.

It reflected the largest number of signatures collected on a petition since 1990 when an aborted recall event followed a successful recall in 1983 that led to the removal of then Mayor Trena Kelly and council members Rick Wentworth and Bobby Davis over the termination of Leonard Taylor as police chief. The 1990 recall try was spurred by frustrations with the council at the time not being responsive to concerns in the community about how the city was dealing with growth.

Del Webb residents over the past 10 years have expressed concerns with development issues connected with the expansion plans of the nearby Union Pacific intermodal facility as well as CenterPoint but it was nothing on the scale of the truck yard controversy.

An existing truck yard in the CenterPoint project with 153 spaces has been operating at CenterPoint without creating issues for Del Webb residents. That’s because trucks are using an internal CenterPoint spine road to reach Roth Road and avoid using Airport Way and Lathrop Road through Manteca.

CenterPoint failed to get an easement from Union Pacific to extend that spine road to the parcel where they want to develop the 486 space truck parking yard. Their solution to be able to market the project was to change their original intent of sending trucks to and from the yard by using the spine road connecting with Roth Road. Their solution not only was going to add 816 more truck trips on Airport Way — the equivalent of three solid lanes on semi-trucks parked bumper to bumper from the 120 Bypass to Lathrop Road — but it would create three signalized intersections in quick succession. It would be reminiscent of East Yosemite Avenue between the Commerce/Northwoods Avenue and Button Avenue intersections.

What those 816 trucks could possibly do to Airport Way prompted one opponent Tuesday to tell the council that Manteca might as well as chuck its Family City motto and go with “Manteca: The City of Big Rigs and Gridlock”.

The project was before the council because CenterPoint was appealing a condition placed on the project by the Manteca Planning Commission that restricted the truck yard hours of operation to 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Not only did the council uphold the concept of restricted hours to reduce issues with the evening use of nearby yards and the ability of residents to sleep, but they made the hours of operation more restrictive changing them to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Given the council could only hear and act on information connected with the appeal, opponents weren’t able to make points about other concerns.

Those points included:

No notice was given to property owners within 300 feet of the new proposed signalized intersection regarding the additional 816 truck trips.

The environmental noise assessment was addressed at the truck yard and not spiked truck traffic adjacent to a residential neighborhood.

The stop and go aspect of the signal with additional trucks had the potential of creating a higher concentration of pollution on top of homes in addition to noise that wasn’t addressed.

The city is in the process of conducting a $150,000 plus traffic study that includes a recommendation truck traffic not be allowed on Airport Way south of Roth Road as a truck route yet the city at the same time was moving an amendment to the CenterPoint project that would generate 816 truck trips in the same area where an expert they were paying to create a citywide truck route was preparing to recommend that no trucks be allowed.

The nearby Lathrop Road and Airport Way intersection has not been improved to allow longer STAA trucks nor was the developer being required to make such improvements.

As designed the project would dump much more traffic on Lathrop Road.

They also were clear they would have no objection to the 486 space truck yard if a spine road were used to access it via Roth Road instead of dumping truck traffic on Airport Way.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email