ARLINGTON – The Pilot Travel Center at Island Crossing officially opened Monday to a non-stop bustle of area residents, truckers and travelers.
Center employees said they are thrilled to be open, ending weeks of people dropping by asking when that day would come.
“We’re thrilled to serve the Arlington community and contribute to the local economy with our new travel center,” said Ken Parent, president of Pilot Flying J, in Knoxville, Tenn.
The 9,520-square-foot upscale truck stop at 2430 Highway 530 just off Interstate 5 Exit 208 features an Arby’s with a drive-through, PJ Fresh gourmet market, Pilot’s Best Gourmet Coffees and seating area to eat, retail space and outdoor seating. It also offers eight truck fueling lanes, 12 gas fuel pumps for cars and three for recreational vehicles, parking and a CAT scale for trucks and parking.
Additional amenities include restrooms, showers and a public laundry room just past the aisles of food items, electronics, automotive goods and other travel essentials.
The center created about 70 jobs and other economic benefits to the community, with all but a few of the positions filled by locals.
The new Travel Center is forecasted to contribute more than $5.1 million in state and local tax revenues annually, with more than $200,000 to go to the city as sales and property tax.
There are three access points to the Pilot Travel Center, including two on Highway 530 and one on Smokey Point Boulevard. Semi-trucks were already making use of the main entrance off the highway that requires them to exit onto the boulevard before doubling back toward I-5.
For the short term, Arlington, Snohomish County and the Stillaguamish Tribe are working with the state Department of Transportation to get a jump on plans for a traffic signal west of the triangle-shaped intersection at Highway 530 and Smokey Point Boulevard to more safely reroute trucks on a highway that already experiences traffic congestion at varying times.