The Rio Grande Valley truck stop industry took a leap recently as Love’s Truck Stop recently opened for business away from the Interstate Highway System. Part of the Oklahoma-based company‘s move into the area can be attributed to an increase in business activity at the Port of Brownsville. Love’s Truck Stop, just off FM 511, is just a stone’s throw from the deep-water facility.
“Love’s generally has its truck stops along an interstate highway,” Eduardo Curzio, one of the managers, said. “They know something we might not know.”
The truck stop’s proximity to the port has made it a major stop for hundreds of truckers. They visit as they are moving material and goods between the United States and Mexico to all over the country. Curzio said the port was probably one of the main reasons why Love’s opened a truck terminal there.
“There is a lot of business activity there,” he said. “In addition to that, LNG is having a big presence.”
Ed Campirano, the deep-water port director, said the truck stop seems to be doing very good business wise.
“Every time I drive by, I see a lot of trucks and cars there,” he said, during a recent tour of the port. “It’s a good sign.”
Keeping people moving
The truck stop, which announces itself as “Love’s Clean Places, Friendly Places,” speaks for itself. The inside of the store is fully stocked with an array of merchandise. This includes stuffed toys, auto and truck supplies, and hot and cold food. It has two restaurant franchises inside its premises, Godfather’s Pizza and Chester Fried Chicken.
The same is true of the other local truck stop companies. The Road Ranger in Combes contains a Subway and TA in Edinburg also has a restaurant. But selling fuel or diesel is what makes such truck stops attractive to those hauling goods along the country’s roads and highways as well. There are also the services available to them such as full showers, money order companies, certified scales and parking spaces.
Truckers like Juan Puente of Brownsville and Josiel Pena of Matamoros agreed.
“I bought 2,700 gallons of diesel last month (in November),” Pena said. “We go wherever they send us and use the truck stops.”