A deal that addresses noise concerns of Del Webb residents, ultimately diverts future truck traffic from Airport Way, and allows a 486 truck parking yard to be built in the CenterPoint project has been hammered out.
All it takes now is for the Manteca City Council when they meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. to bless the deal by approving a memorandum of understanding. The council meets at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center Street.
If approved, CenterPoint would proceed with construction of the truck yard and would be allowed to have trucks access it from using Airport Way via Street B — a half street already in place next to Crothall Laundry just north of the western entrance to Del Webb known as Daisywood — for up to a year. During that time CenterPoint needs to secure required permits from the Army Corps of Engineers and the South San Joaquin Irrigation District to cross a SSJID drain and extend Intermodal Way south to the truck parking lot.
Union Pacific Railroad has already agreed to an easement for CenterPoint to extend Intermodal Way across its property.
Intermodal Way connects with Roth Road west of Airport Way. Roth Road to Interstate 5 is a legal truck route.
The MOU will eliminate the construction of another road south of Daisywood with traffic signals to access the truck yard. There also will be no requirement for traffic signals at Street B and Airport Way. That would eliminate having three traffic signals in quick succession on Airport Way at Lathrop Road, Daisywood and an access street to CenterPoint.
If a signal were installed it would replicate the situation that exists on East Yosemite Avenue that has three signalized intersections on top of each other at Commerce Drive, the Highway 99 ramps and Button Avenue. Del Webb residents were concerned the constant braking and accelerating of trucks — up to 816 truck trips a day are expected from the proposed truck parking yard — would create unbearable noise plus safety concerns created by stop and go traffic. Others were worried that many signals in such close spacing with disrupt traffic flow too much on Airport Way that is shaping up as the key north-south arterial in west Manteca.
Improvement plans for the large truck parking yard will also include improvements to Airport Way to minimize truck noise by incorporating overlays at transitions, trench cuts and pot holes. The other half of Street B will also be constructed.
Street B will function just like Tactical Way to the north just south of Lovelace Avenue. It will have full access with left and right turns.
Once Intermodal Way is extended it will become the primary truck route. Trucks will still use Street B but it will be those going to and from future buildings.
The truck parking lot is expected to draw independent drivers and others with many moving containers to and from the Union Pacific intermodal truck-to train facility just across the railroad tracks to the west that has been approved to increase 2½ times in capacity over the next 20 to 30 years.
The staff report mentioned that if refrigerated trailers are parked at the lot it is highly unlikely it would be for anything but dead storage meaning the refrigeration units would not be operating. Due to costs involved to run the units when they are loaded with perishables they are usually kept at warehouse sites where there is plug in power. CenterPoint is not planning to provide plug in power.
There is already a 153 space truck parking lot north of the proposed 486 space lot. The design of both is similar to a new truck parking lot in Lathrop just over the railroad tracks past the Manteca Unified School District office complex on Louise Avenue.
With the previously mentioned improvements moving forward the council is being asked to reconsider their July decision to restrict hours of operation to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and allow 24 hour use.
It was questioned at the time whether the council could legally impose such a restriction.
The council modified a Planning Commission recommendation in May to restrict hours to 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. that CenterPoint appealed.
After the July meeting when the hours were further restricted by elected leaders, council members Gary Singh and Debby Moorhead contacted Union Pacific officials to set up a meeting to see if they would be willing to provide CenterPoint with an easement to avoid the need to run trucks permanently down Airport Way.
Singh has been tirelessly pushing to develop a “spine road” connecting existing and emerging business parks between Airport Way and the railroad tracks to the west in a bid to keep truck traffic off of Airport Way.
Staff — after UP became involved — has been working on the solution that addresses the concern of Del Webb residents, allows CenterPoint to proceed, and doesn’t throw a major wrench into plans to develop an acceptable truck route circulation plan for the city or create avoidable truck congestion on the Airport Way corridor.
A petition presented to the council in July opposing the CenterPoint to develop and market the 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.
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.
Del Webb residents that spoke in July before the council 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 email@example.com