The good news is that the world’s largest parking lot — aka New York’s Long Island Expressway, aka I-495 — is getting its first full rest area.
The bad news is that no trucks or buses will be allowed to use it.
The new 15,000-square-foot welcome center will be located on eastbound I-495 between exits 51 and 52 in Dix Hills. It’ll have:
- 30 bathrooms
- an electric car charging station
- satellite police offices
- 24-hour security cameras
- parking for 135 cars
- a Taste New York kiosk with local products
What it won’t have is any truck parking. Instead, trucks will be have to travel further east to a New York State Department of Transportation facility at Exit 66, which has parking for 27 trucks and portable restrooms.
Kendra Hems, president of the Trucking Association of New York, said her organization was disappointed trucks and buses were excluded from the new rest area, but credited the DOT for keeping TANY up to date as issues around the new facility unfold. She said that while the DOT facility at Exit 66 is “not ideal,” DOT plans to improve it in the future.
Hems said she also gives DOT credit for trying to find a balanced solution in a difficult location. She added that DOT recognizes the need for truck parking especially in the heavily congested New York City/Long Island area.
Newsday, Long Island’s leading daily newspaper, reports that New York State Department of Transportation officials will ban tractor trailers and buses at the rest stop, which is expected to open in September, in exchange for the community agreeing not to sue or impede sewer and water district approvals for the $20.2 million project.