O&A Masthead

Colorado News —
December 2014

Columnist — Joyce Trent

DENVER — Colorado is enjoying the same drop in gasoline prices as the rest of the nation. And gasoline retailers are selling so much that they are having a hard time keeping up with the demand.

In one month the price of a gallon of unleaded dropped thirty-nine cents in Colorado Springs.

Colorado flag

"We are having to call for tankers to refill so often we can't even give the suppliers twenty-four hours' notice," station owner James Kahlon told a local newspaper. He said his station is going through about 14,000 gallons a day.

Late in November the average price of a gallon of gasoline in the state ran about $3, down from $3.18 a year ago. But some cities in the state did even better. In Colorado Springs at the same time stations were selling at $2.83 a gallon. The lowest was $2.71. Two stations in Grand Junction were even offering gasoline at $2.65.

As usual, towns in ski country reported the steepest prices. Snowmass ranked the highest at $4.29 a gallon at a Conoco.

JOHNSTOWN — TravelCenters of America has acquired the landmark truckstop known as Johnson's Corner.

In 1950 Joe Johnson and a manager laid out the plans for Johnson's Corner on an old road in the middle of nowhere. When it opened two years later motorists gassing up had an unobstructed view of farmland and majestic mountains. But proving that "if you build it they will come," the state soon constructed Interstate 25 right in front of his property.

From a few pumps and a restaurant it has grown to twelve fueling stations, six diesel lanes, a store, quick-serve deli, 110 truck parking spaces and amenities for drivers like a lounge and six fully automated showers, Wi-Fi, an ATM, and a rewards program. It operates twenty-four hours a day, never once shutting — even during blizzards that closed the highway.

And its restaurant and bakery with its signature cinnamon rolls has helped make it world-famous; now customers even can order the rolls online.

Johnson died in 1981. His stepson, Chauncey Taylor, was the owner before the sale. He started working there 50 years ago as a dishwasher. He said he put the business up for sale because at 62 he no longer wanted to keep up with the demands of running a round-the-clock business and managing the 170 employees. But he said he wouldn't have sold to just anyone. He felt the TravelCenters of America was the kind of outfit that would maintain the high standards his family set.

And, for his part, Tom O'Brien, CEO of TravelCenters of America said, "We are very happy to have the opportunity to acquire this renowned destination truckstop. The addition of Johnson's Corner gives us the opportunity to provide professional drivers a new full-service travel center while also keeping the charm and character they have come to love at Johnson's Corner."

One of the things he plans to do is to establish a truck service facility.

Originally published in the December 2014 issue of the O&A Marketing News.
Copyright 2014 by KAL Publications Inc.

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