Neighbors concerned about effects of proposed truck stop

PENDLETON – Homeowners living in a quiet subdivision in Pendleton are fighting the construction of a truck stop in their backyard that they claim would threaten their way of life.

Now, they’re gathering signatures on a petition hoping to be heard, but it may be difficult because the land doesn’t belong to their city but rather the town of Ingalls.

“(The community) was built for families, and we’re not going to feel safe letting our children out in that environment,” said Dawn Kopf, a concerned homeowner and parent.

Kopf said they are concerned about a possible increase in crime, pollution, noise and traffic. In addition, they fear the truck stop will decrease property values.

Next door neighbor Melissa Dixon said truck stops bring their share of problems.

“There’s prostitution and there’s drugs (associated with truck stops),” Dixon told Fox 59.

Oklahoma-based Love’s Travel Stops has plans to open a location in a large commercial lot that separates the homeowners’ subdivision from the interstate next fall.

Project developer Frank Ille said it’s the ideal spot for one of their stores and the property is zoned accordingly. He also said, while most of the neighbors’ concerns are unfounded, he will address them at a public hearing scheduled next week. The Ingalls Planning Commission will likely vote on the initial drawings and plans.

Ille said the truck stop would employ 80 people if the plan succeeds.

“It does make sense location-wise for the truck stop. However, I don’t think when you typically see truck stops, you do see a huge residential neighborhood adjacent,” said Erin Jones, another concerned homeowner.

The homeowners have collected more than 500 signatures online and on paper.

‪”We feel like we’re standing out here all alone. Nobody will represent us or help us or back us up or anything‬,” said ‪Amanda Eikenberry, a homeowner who’s concerned about how much say they might have in the final decision.‬

The Ingalls Planning Commission president said the proposal is under review. Otherwise the commission had no comment. The town board will have the final say on the truck stop proposal.


  • Michael

    What did you think would happen when you move into a housing subdivision that is a block from one of the most heavily used interstates in the state?

    • Guest

      Ingalls did not want Summer Lake because, as they put it, Ingalls" did not have a strong enough infrastructure" to handle a community the size of Summer Lake. One council member actually got nasty with one our residents at the first meeting by telling her, "You rejected us" which is a bold faced lie. When she was asked at the April 9th meeting if she had ever lived by a truck stop she replied, "Yes I did and it never bothered me." Of course in was pointed out to her that since she lives in Ingalls on a quiet street, she couldn't say truck stops weren't annoying. When the facts of a Comprehensive Plan for development was quoted to her, she shut up. That plan the Council passed in 2006 mentions taking measures to ensure no drop in property values, securing the safety of the community, keeping industrial development out, and so on and so on. Of course, Ingalls will not have to deal with any of the above and can come pretty close to enforcing that plan. But they can't and now I am convinced, they wouldn't bother to do the same for Summer Lake, as we are 5 miles out of view and out of mind.

    • loves doesn't care

      When I moved out here, I was told that everything was moving up this way, and that we would soon see little strip centers pop up around us. A CVS was talked about, and they even got the ground ready, but something happened. NOTHING was ever mentioned about a truck stop. What would happen if they would have put a Loves at the 146th street exit? It wouldn't be like it is today. I imagine it's going to be a dead end once Loves gets put in. But, off topic, no I wasn't under the impression anything like this would happen, and was under the impression other businesses would pop up. I also heard rumors of a Kroger, but I HIGHLY doubt that will happen. I think Ingalls will be hurting themselves as well if they OK it. They'll be giving up revenue because of all of the businesses that COULD have been built out here. There's a lot of potential out there, but I doubt it after a Loves is put in.

  • Doraneast

    First of Ann Keil, you are missing several key facts in your report. I live in the Summerlake Addition, the one in your report and as of now we are not in any city. Please make a note of that. Second the residents of this addition has fought the probable annexation from the town of Ingalls for several years, even though when we all built here we signed a form stating we would agree not to fight it when the time comes. Since we have fought annexation, the town of Ingalls annexed around the addition including several miles of land adjacent to the interstate. They zoned it upon annexation as a commercial, light industrial use. If the residents here did not fight annexation they would have a direct say in what goes across the street. But the board in the addition did and here we are. Now as far as crime, obviously very few of these residents have ever been to a Love's truck stop. Even though as a trucker myself, I do not stop at them, they are clean, well run operations. You are not going to find crime there. The crime issue means nothing anyway since there is another truck stop a few hundred yards to the north. If there was going to be any crime it would be there. What I do not understand Ms. Keil is why you didn’t get into the other issues surrounding this community. There is an issue more major than a truck stop it is the lack of fire protection. If your house catches fire here, it is gone. Period. You may remember that massive fire here a couple of years ago just after Thanksgiving that basically took out three homes and damaged a fourth. There was one a few months ago and the fire department had great response for being so far away and that house was a total loss. Of course some of us wanted to put a fire department out here but other Residents fought that TOO! But you are obviously looking for some fluff piece.

    • rnaa2010

      Not sure who Doraneast is, but if you want to argue getting facts straight. . .let me give you some facts. If you wanted to argue fire proctection, maybe you should have taken a stand similar to those taking a stand now! The fire department that is suppose to protect/respond to this community is none other than INGALLS, the same town that didn't repsond fast enough for you and you seem to be defending!!! So, where do you stand. . .for the town of Ingalls deciding what goes in our back yard, the same ones that you quoted as "lack of fire protection". If the Love's catches on fire. . .you is going to repsond?

      • Doraneast

        Actually Ingalls is not the primary or secondary fire protection for the Summerlake Addition. The primary fire protection for the Summerlake addition is Vernon township/Fortville. The secondary is Pendleton. You can blame the Pendleton Fire chief for this and you can search the Anderson Herald Bulletin archives to actually find the articles on said meetings as to why this is.

      • rnaa2010

        That's funny because at the Planning Commission meeting that several Summerlake residents attended this past Monday, they clearly stated that Ingalls was the primary responder for Summerlake. . .which does make sense that it's them and not Fortville as Fortville isn't part of Madison County? Please humor me and tell me why this is, if you are indeed correct. Is it because Ingalls doesn't have the manpower to cover such a community as you so well stated previously? And why would I blame the Pendleton Fire Chief for the development of land that Ingalls annexed? Was he/she in charge of preventing that? I didn't think so! AGAIN. . the issue isn't annexation, respnse time to Summerlake, which town/city/county is responsible for patrolling/servicing Summerlake. . the issue is the safety of our children, the decrease in property value and the direct environmental effects that a truck stop in your backyard brings. If you're not concerned about any of the above as a home owner in the area, more power to you! Stop commenting, watching and following on the story then!

      • Doraneast

        north of 800S where the water tower is Ingalls and they are responsible for fire protection. there. Summerlake is not in Ingalls and a part of Green township thus they have a contract for fire protection from Vernon Township unless this has changed very recently. The secondary contract is with Pendleton. The fire chief of Pendleton successfully blocked a new fire station to be built on land provided by CP Morgan for the purpose of a fire department for Green township. The proposals for an individual and mutual fire department with Ingalls was tabled by the township board, shortly after ward is when the annexation talk began. It was more than talk or threats, even going so far as talking about getting lawyers involved. Now you have confused my statements with being all gung ho, I am not. I am simply pointing out that the addition doesnt have a say My concern lies into having to pay lawyers fees in my next home owners dues because lawyers get involved. Now I am not sure what you feel should be built across from Summerlake, it will not be a hospital or a mall. it will not be offices. It will be warehousing/ light industrial commercial so there is going to be trucks. My major concern is the infrastructure from I 69 past the addition. To say a truck stop is going to harm children is still befuddling to me. I can understand noise pollution but if you actually have seen how new trucks stops are actually built, this shouldnt be a problem. The problem lies in the infrastructure. Now if you do not want anything but a mall or stores….. I have no help for you. But this is when a voice can be said to force Love's into upgrading the surrounding infrastructure that benefits everyone,. I know I would love to see stop light at the interstate and at the 800S/IN13 intersection and the front entrance where the church is. I would love to addition turn lanes by the interstate, but the state of Indiana has already stated that the area doesn't require any upgrades. This idea that a truck stop will devalue property is nonsense. Inadequate fire protection will do this. As for the children, we all have to think of the children. I have no idea unless people allow their children to roam the field behind where the truck stop is planned as to why safety of the children come into play. Maybe you can enlighten me about this. I am not saying this sarcastically, like you have taken all my post. I would like to know exactly why you believe all this will happen?I mean the notion that truck stops are den of crime, prostitution and all other kinds of things is stereotypical. You are more likely to find more actual crime in this neighborhood than at the truck stop.

    • DTM

      Uh, the requirement to sign and agree that we would not fight annexation to Ingalls was illegal and was thrown out. We don't want to be a part of Ingalls, they didn't want to be a part of us. We don't want their Love's Travel Stop. They are so far away from us – at least 5 miles – and will not be affected by the travel, gas fumes, noises, trash, and all the damage that comes as far as roads and environment care concerned, and Ingalls will not have to "enjoy" any of that. The town is in it for the money and that is all it is interested in. Heck, they don't even have the funds to light their park, or fix their ball fields. Summer Lake development will get screwed and Ingalls will pocket the money.

  • rnaa2010

    We have never FOUGHT annexation. . .do you know why? Because they have only threatened annextion. . they don't want to! We have a bigger population than the whole town of Ingalls. . .meaning what. . .we would have the majority of the seats/votes on the town council!! Back to facts. . as a trucker, you so clearly stated above that you have never stopped at a Love's, so I asked you this. . how can you follow that statement up with "they are clean, well run operations"? According to you, you've never been to one! This community didn't/hasn't/will not directly insult truckers specifically

  • mach

    I’ve lived in Summer lake for 10 years. I always knew Ingalls could annex us but have never heard that they tried! This isn’t about annexation! This is about a 18 acre truck stop that will be 1400 feet from my backyard. Statistics on the FBI website are terrifying! Not to mention the Loves just up 69 in Marion had 106 police calls in 6 months. Safety of our children is #1. Yes there is a Pilot across the interestate. I can’t see it, hear it, or smell it! So not concerned about Pilot!

  • trkdvr turned mom

    Yet another slap in the truckers face !!!! what kind of low lifes they must be to do a job 24/7,most holidays away from their families,for what ends up being less them minumin wage per hour just so you living in fancy housing additions can have your milk,bread, ipads, designer clothes delivered to your merchant of choice upon your request. But not in your backyard….which happens to be next to a very heavily traveled truck route which will get heavier with the expansion of I69. As for the crime,prostitutes and drugs, I have been to several truck stops in my life and have not experienced these things. And as for you children being unsafe, maybe we need to watch our children more closely and teach them the evils of the real world. As for the police calls to the Loves truck stop at the Marion exit, how many of them are accident reports, not major crimes? I live near that area and never heard or seen a prostitute around, had friends who worked there who never heard or seen such goings on. As a former truck driver now a Mother I would never miss a opportunity to take my son to a truck stop for a meal or potty break so he can be thankful to the men and women who help supply his world with his needs and wants at the risk of a normal 9-5 job and family life.

    • Runnergirl

      You are clearly mistaken if you think Summerlake is a "fancy subdivision". This is not about the truckers either. The ones committing these crimes at truck stops are not necessarily the truckers. The truck stop is the place this happens. Do some research. You obviously haven't.

  • loves doesn't care

    I live in Summerlake, and am completely against having the truck stop where it is being proposed. If they were to build this loves truck stop at the 146th street exit(which they would NEVER ok that,) what do you think would have happened? The small businesses that are there now, would not have came in. When we bought our house out here, we were told about how everything is coming out this way, and it would just help home values. Having a Loves truck stop out here isn't going to do that. Other businesses aren't going to want to pop up around here due to the increased truck traffic. Especially when it will then be going both ways, instead of one way towards pilot. I would say ok if they wanted to stick it across the street from Pilot, or next to it. That makes the most sense. There are more…..industrial type of businesses already over there, plus it doesn't impact our neighborhood. I have to agree with other issues about truck stops attracting crime, drugs, prostitution, etc. Plus, the light pollution is going to be terrible for the homeowners on that side of the neighborhood. Oh, they're also going to have an access road to/from 800, which runs RIGHT up against the Summerlake edition. Think of how nice that is going to be hearing trucks going up and down that road, especially at night. None of this makes any sense. Ingalls will more than likely ok it because I'm sure their focus is going to be more geared towards the money they will bring in compared to having any type of compassion for the families of Summerlake. Ingalls won't even take care of 800 properly and fix the pot holes for us. Why would they care about us now?

  • STM

    After attending the Town Council Meeting last night, it has been made very clear that Ingalls wants the money and doesn't care one bit for Summer Lake. Throughout the meeting, different Ingalls residents presented various proposals to fix problems in the city's park and ball field. They were requesting simple things like grounding the wires on the ball field to avoid serious injury to the public, or extending lighting to the town's gazebo, a gathering/meeting place for a youth group and for the town's citizens. Both proposals were refused funding. Instead, the Council voted to get rid of the ball field, and argued the necessity of lighting the park/gazebo, stating that no one needs to be in the park after dark. In past years, Ingalls has refused non-profit use of vacant lots for public gardens to produce food for the high number of Ingalls citizens on welfare or receiving other assistance.
    There is nothing Ingalls has done to date that would even hint of them having any interest in keeping Summer Lake in good condition, or having any care for the safety, health or future of our development.
    When Ingalls approved DB Mann's covenants and voted to annex the acres across from Summer Lake, they did it all in one council meeting. They did both actions in the wrong order and thus illegally. They did not open the issue for discussion. They should have annexation first then hold a public meeting, then review the complete set of covenants DB Mann was proposing, and hold another public meeting. They blatantly passed DB Mann's plans for development of the land without even reading them. At the same meeting they then passed the annexation what he was proposing.
    So, let Ingalls take care of the land they already have and keep those properties up, and leave us alone.

  • Guest

    I oppose the truck stop. We have similar issue with a trucking company trying to operate right in the middle of all of our residents. I sure hope the board doesn't pass this. Our roads can't take the traffic of those semis and now I fear for my grand kids. Anyone ever see what happens when a steel coil rolls off of a trailer in an accident? It's horrific! Good luck with your situation. We are seeing a lawyer on Monday to see what can be done about our issue.

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