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I-70 travel center to create up to 60 jobs

Interchange at Clark County Fairgrounds could see significant changes soon.

A travel center near the Interstate 70 and Ohio 41 interchange and the $8 million Prime Ohio II industrial park could bring as many as 60 jobs to Clark County next year.

The former Prime Fuel truck stop has been sold to Love’s, a national truck stop and country store chain, according to public records. Clemens Oil Co. sold the property at 4725 S. Charleston Pike to Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores, Inc. for $566,000 last week.

Kealey Dorian, media specialist for Love’s, said construction could begin early next year with the travel center possibly opening sometime in 2014.

Dorian said the company has closed on one part of the property and is under contract for another piece of property nearby, which could be completed this fall.

“We just think it’s a prime location right there off of the interstate,” Dorian said. “We think we’ll be able to serve a lot of travelers, and that encompasses people who live there and professional drivers getting on and off the interstate.”

The jobs will be both full- and part-time at the travel stop, which will be open 24 hours a day. A restaurant will also be attached to the travel stop, although a franchise has not yet been chosen because the deal is not yet completed.

The travel stop is one of the first pieces of the industrial park, which is predicted to bring 1,000 jobs to the area. Construction is expected to begin next week on the infrastructure at the planned 250-acre development, and could take nine months to complete.

The I-70 interchange at Ohio 41 could see major growth in the coming years, according to economic development officials in Clark County. In addition to Prime Ohio II and the travel center, a hotel is planned at the Clark County Fairgrounds, and a double-sided digital sign will be added by the Convention Facilities Authority along I-70.

County Commissioner John Detrick said the proposed travel stop is a positive for the community.

“Clark County has eight intersections on I-70, and this is the most developable one,” Detrick said. “I think it could lead to future retail expansion.”

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