Resident group seeks to put brakes on new truck stop location
A proposed Flying J truck stop at the corner of Clements Ferry Road and Beresford Run is drawing ire from a group of local citizens. Over 80 residents of the Beresford Creek Landing neighborhood sent a letter of discontent to Berkeley County Supervisor Bill Peagler on April 30, expressing worry about the potential negative impacts of the truck stop.
Some residents of the neighborhoods along the Clements Ferry corridor say that traffic on the street is already hazardous and congested enough, and that adding a truck stop will only increase the dangers.
“I’m not opposed to someone developing their property by any way, shape, or form,” said Nelliefield Plantation resident Lisa Kerns. “What I am opposed to is the amount of traffic that we already have on Clements Ferry Road, and the fact that we are right now under construction (for a widening project), and the amount of traffic that it’s going to add and the type of traffic that it’s going to add.”
Although there is a plan in place to extend Clements Ferry Road to a four lane highway, some residents are concerned that it’s not enough.
“With that influx of widening, it’s going to create a market out here for more homes to be built, for more businesses to be built. It’s going to bring more traffic,” said Kerns.
Peagler says that he is “certainly opposed” to the truck stop’s proposed location.
“We support the City of Charleston’s position on encroachment permits to Beresford Creek Landing’s road being denied,” stated Peagler, referring to the City of Charleston’s resistance to the development of the area.
Both Peagler and Kerns believe that the road widening should happen and that a truck stop will bring in unnecessary traffic. But, because of the traffic that wider roads will also bring in, Kerns believes the road expansion is only a temporary solution.
But traffic congestion isn’t the only concern being expressed by residents regarding the proposed Flying J. Beresford Creek Landing resident BJ Bryan feels apprehension about the impact the truck stop could have on the environment.
“The plans for the truck stop show semi-truck diesel fueling operations at a location that is currently denoted as protected wetlands,” says Bryan. Additionally, Bryan notes that Beresford Run is the sole entry and exit point to his subdivision, and he believes continued construction will create dangerous conditions if a storm surge were to occur.
“The next storm surge will create an ‘island’ for the Beresford Creek Landing neighborhood and prevent egress,” he says. “This almost occurred with Hurricane Irma.”
Peagler had no comments on the claims that the truck stop will be a public safety and environmental hazard, but echoed sentiments of unease about the location of the Flying J.
“We’re doing everything we can to widen Clements Ferry as much as possible without the corresponding outlet onto 526 or another rerouting of trucks in a different way,” he said. “That problem would only be exacerbated by a truck stop in that area.”
Peagler addressed the truck stop project via social media in response to resident concerns, sharing the following in a letter posted to Facebook.
“The site, under its current zoning, does support this particular use and the applicant may choose to pursue the project without access to Beresford Run,” stated Peagler. “If that is the case, I can assure you that the County will ensure that the applicant obeys to the strictest adherence of County zoning law.”
Flying J provided the following statement when asked to comment on concerns expressed by residents regarding their Clements Ferry Road location.
“Pilot Flying J will take all necessary precautions and follow all applicable regulations as they relate to developing near a Wetlands Area. Pilot Flying J is committed to all of our locations serving drivers passing through, as well as all of the guests in the communities in which we reside.”