PAQTNKEK: With the latest renderings of their $8 million showcase development, the Bayside Travel Centre, an Esso-branded outlet supplied by Wilsons Fuels and Calgary-based Husky is another step closer to becoming a reality.
Rose Paul, Paqtnkek’s director of land and economic development, confirmed the project management tender was awarded to Lindsay Construction, and currently, the firm is on-site setting up their gear.
The 16,000 square foot travel centre, 20 kilometres east of Antigonish, will serve as a convenience for long-haul truckers travelling on the Trans-Canada Highway to and from Cape Breton and Newfoundland and Labrador.
When developed, the Bayside Travel Centre will have four retail gas pumps, with eight fueling stations, along with four pumps at the diesel card lock station, which will be supplied by Husky.
Steve Perry, account manager with Wilsons Fuels, told The Reporter Monday morning, with the convenience store and everything that is anticipated to be happening at Bayside, he projected the gas station would be hiring approximately 20 people.
“Working with Paqtnkek it’s a great opportunity for us to provide our industry expertise and assist in growing the community, the employment base and training in the sector.”
Last weekend, Hatch Engineering, along with Lindsay Construction, were digging test pits to check for frost and get soil temperature readings, before beginning to lay the foundation.
Construction is scheduled to begin soon, with the anticipated scheduled opening coming by the end of summer 2019.
What sets this apart from other Wilsons Fuels locations is the fact it’s a highway pitstop, as a lot of their locations tend to be in more urban settings.
Under the Esso-banner, the Bayside Travel Centre will have the company’s top-of-the-line premium brand, Synergy gasoline.
Similar to an Irving Big Stop, the Bayside Travel Centre will cater to professional drivers offering a driver’s lounge that will include a separate entrance rest area with wall-mounted flat screen TVs, free WiFi and large showers with a secure change area.
The travel centre will include; 24-hour retail fuel with complementary ‘call ahead’ service; 24-hour diesel fuel card-lock station for long-haulers working the northeast corridor; an electric charging station; and a band-owned and operated convenience store.
The development will also bring a much-needed amenity to the area as it earmarks two quick-service restaurants, each with a drive-thru around an atrium that will feature a 50-seat public seating area.
Paul hopes to be able to announce who will be operating the two quick-service restaurants within a few weeks, as details are still being wrangled out, but he said things are moving along positively.
The Bayside Travel Centre is expected to open in the summer of 2019, and the band will consult with community members about Phase 2 of the development, which will be located just to the east of the travel centre.