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St. Louis Major Francis G. Slay joined Alderwoman Dionne Flowers (Ward 2); Jenny Love Meyer, vice president of communications, Love's Travel Stops and Country Store; representatives of Subway and Ronald McDonald and local officials for a ribbon-cutting celebration at the new business, located at 6124 North Broadway in the redeveloped North Riverfront Commerce Corridor.
Love's Travel Stops and Country Store Opens in North St. Louis Riverfront Commerce Corridor
St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay, spoke about the hopes that Love's would pave the way for future development.
by Bob Moore, firstname.lastname@example.org
ST. LOUIS, (SLFP.com), January 14, 2014 - Love's Travel Stops and Country Store is the first major business to open in the redeveloped North Riverfront Commerce Corridor in north St. Louis.
At a ribbon-cutting event held Tuesday, at the new store, located at 6124 North Broadway, local officials, including St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay, spoke about their hopes that Love's would pave the way for future development.
Alderwoman Dionne Flowers (Ward 2) recalled that nearly twelve years ago, Otis Williams, executive director St. Louis Development Corporation (SLDC), asked her and two other aldermen for seed money to do a study to see what could be done to rebuild an area that had been sadly neglected.
"I never thought that this would be what came of it," stated Flowers.
The area north of downtown St. Louis has suffered through tough times, said Flowers. "Many of you may not know that many residents lived in this area and many businesses had to be relocated. We held a number of meetings to get to this point. Back in 2008, as you know, the economy took a turn for the worse and my ward was hit very seriously with the home foreclosures and predatory lending. A lot of people lost their jobs. It was a challenging time," she observed.
When she learned that SLDC was considering a Love's Travel Center, Flowers responded that it sounded like an amusement park. As the crowd attending the event, broke out into laughter, she expressed a concern that it would be just another trucking service business that would fail.
Acknowledging that her ward was not filled with lofts and big colleges and high schools, Flowers stated proudly, I've been an industrial alderman. I've been the Queen of Industry."
Flowers related that she first discovered Love's Travel Centers during a trip to Antonio, Texas in the fall of 2011.
After seeing numerous centers along the way, she took a chance and turned off the highway to explore the business. "There was a nice side for automobiles and a nice side for trucks, just like here," said Flowers.
"It was very clean and professional and provided great service for truckers," she recalled.
I'm looking forward to the rest of the development that is to come. There are more businesses, particularly trucking businesses that will be attracted to this area. So, I'm going to rename myself the Trucking Queen," Flowers announced with a big smile.
Flowers stated that when this business came here, she requested that residents in the 63147 and 63107 zip codes would have the first invite to the employment session. And, they did, she reported.
On Tuesday, Flowers learned that 90 percent of the people hired at Subway also came from those zip codes.
"Mayor Slay, you have a great development corporation that is doing a great job. Even though we have some knock out, drag out fights with the board of aldermen, Mayor Slay, you top the charts on this one," concluded Flowers.
This new location also kicks off the 50th anniversary of building for Love's, currently ranked No. 9 on Forbes Magazine's annual listing of America's Largest Private Companies. The company, headquartered in Oklahoma City, Okla., remains entirely family-owned and operated. The company has more than 310 locations and 180 Love's Truck Tire Care centers in 39 states.
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