Published July 31, 2014
Expiration date: 8/29/2014

The district commander has received a joint application for federal and state permits as described below:

Loves Travel Stops & Country Stores
10601 North Pennsylvania Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK  73120

WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK:  The project is located within wetlands adjacent to the Jackson River, at 9100 Winterberry Avenue, Covington, in Allegheny County, Virginia.

PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE:  The applicant proposes to construct commercial development of a Loves Travel Stops & Country Stores facility encompassing 15 acres of the 28.9 acre site.  Jurisdictional impacts will be 1.8 acres of a combination of palustrine emergent (PEM) and forested (PFO) wetlands.  Compensation will be in the form of in-lieu fee credit purchase with The Nature Conservancy in the Upper James watershed. There are currently no mitigation bank wetlands credits available in this watershed.  Based on applicant discussion with the Virginia Department of Transportation, the entrance road into the site is required to be located directly across from the intersection of Selma-Low Moor Road and Winterberry Avenue and subsequently divides the site into distinct lots.  Loves will be developed along the eastern property line, immediately adjacent to the County Administration Building.  Approximately 150,000 cubic yards of fill material to be imported in from local borrow areas will be trucked into the site.  The “Store” labeled on the site plan includes the main store (6,000+/-square feet), a fast food restaurant with drive thru (3,000+/-square feet), a second fast food restaurant with no drive thru (1,500+/-square feet) and a tire shop (8,300+/-square feet). A buffer of approximately 60+ feet is being left between all construction activities and the edge of the Jackson River. This site was 1 of 11 exits evaluated off I-64, within the Covington/Clifton Forge area.  The closest existing facility of this type is located 45 miles to the west in Alta, Virginia.

In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated. A vicinity map and plan view is attached. This public notice and the drawings can also be viewed at .

AUTHORITY:  Permits are required pursuant to Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia.

FEDERAL EVALUATION OF APPLICATION:  The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest.  The decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources.  The benefits which reasonably may be expected from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments.  All of the proposal's relevant factors will be considered, including conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use classification, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.  The Environmental Protection Agency's "Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material" will also be applied (Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act). 

The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of this proposed activity.  Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal.  To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above.  Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act.  Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.  Anyone may request a public hearing to consider this permit application by writing to the district commander within 30 days of the date of this notice, stating specific reasons for holding the public hearing.  The district commander will then decide if a hearing should be held.

Preliminary review indicates that:  (l) no environmental impact statement will be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, no listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544, 87 Stat. 884), as amended) will be affected.  Based on this no effect determination, no further coordination with the Fish and Wildlife Service is required; and (3) preliminary review indicated that this site has potential eligibility for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places due to the presence of nineteenth century coke ovens, therefore consultation has been initiated with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.  Additional information might change any of these findings. 

COMMENT PERIOD:  Comments on this project should be made in writing, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers (ATTN:  CENAO-WR-R), 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia  23510-1096, and should be received by the close of business on Aug. 29, 2014.

PRIVACY & CONFIDENTIALITY:  Comments and information, including the identity of the submitter, submitted in response to this Public Notice may be disclosed, reproduced, and distributed at the discretion of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  Information that is submitted in connection with this Public Notice cannot be maintained as confidential by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  Submissions should not include any information that the submitter seeks to preserve as confidential.

If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact Danielle Courtois at 540-651-2088 or Danielle.


Danielle Courtois
Environmental Scientist
Western Virginia Regulatory Section