A Fresno trucking company has built a secured off-street parking facility for truckers who are barred by ordinance from parking their big rigs overnight on Fresno's streets.
DTL Transport, which was started 20 years ago by businessman Teja Singh Dosanjh, will open its new DTL Parking center on April 1. The 7-acre truck parking lot on Golden State Boulevard, between Shaw and Ashlan avenues, can accommodate up to 152 tractor-trailer rigs at one time.
Jazz Sidhu, DTL's chief financial officer, said the idea sprang from the company's experience with its own fleet of 30 trucks being damaged at unsecured parking areas.
"We had trucks being broken into and it was costing us a lot of money," he said. Sidhu said other truck owner-operators risk damage to their rigs as well as theft of their freight: "There's a lot of freight that's worth a lot of money."
Once the lot is open for business, truck drivers who pay the monthly rental charge of $179 to $250 will receive electronic cards granting them access through the entry and exit gates. More than 50 closed-circuit cameras monitor the lot and the building that houses DTL's dispatch and accounting departments, which are being relocated under one roof from separate locations.
DTL (www.dtlparking.com) already has begun using the lot for its own fleet and its owner-operators, and will open the lot to other drivers. "We're looking for the owner-operators who live in the area, driving long haul or short haul," he said. "When they come home, they don't have anywhere to park."
A Fresno city ordinance, passed in mid-2010, forbids drivers from parking trucks with a gross weight of 12,000 pounds or more from parking on any public street or alley in the city for more than four hours or risk facing a $250 fine.
New Walmart stores
Walmart has opened two new stores in the central San Joaquin Valley, in Clovis and Visalia.
The Clovis store is 192,000 square feet and is at 1185 Herndon Ave. near Highway 168, in the Clovis Crossing Regional Shopping Center. It opened on Wednesday and will employ 280 full- and part-time workers.
Clovis city officials were pleased with the addition to their business community.
"Walmart and neighboring stores will generate a synergy that will attract buyers from all over our region, and local consumers will have new options to buy affordable goods and services in Clovis," said Jose G. Flores, a Clovis City Council member.
On Friday, shoppers in Visalia greeted the retail giant's newest concept, the Walmart Neighborhood Market.
The store is smaller than the average Walmart store at 36,660 square feet and features a wide variety of produce, fresh bread, meats, cheeses and prepared foods. The neighborhood markets also include pharmacy items and general merchandise.
The store will be open 24 hours, seven days a week, and employ about 65 full- and part-time workers.
Staff writers Tim Sheehan and Robert Rodriguez contributed to Word on the Street. It was compiled by Sheehan. The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6319, firstname.lastname@example.org or @tshee