Customers were lined up to fill their gas tanks during the grand opening of Racetrack Gas Station on South Shore Road on Saturday, April 19.
After going from three gas stations to one for the past several years, St. John now has a second gas station with the long-awaited opening of the Racetrack Gas Station on the east side of the renowned Jacob’s Ladder hill on Southshore Road between the Westin Resort and Cruz Bay, on Saturday, April 19.
The construction of the purported $1 million gas station on a long narrow strip alongside the steep two-lane road is an engineering marvel, with towering concrete retaining walls creating the space for the pumps and tanks.
Additional commercial space is being developed between the new station and the neighboring St. John Market in the neighboring commercial center adjacent to Guinea Grove apartments and the Westin.
Special guests gas jockeys, above, were on had to serve customers for the opening.
The E&C Gas Station in Contant has been the only Cruz Bay station since the construction of the roundabout took the former Texaco station.
The former Domino’s gas station on Rte. 20 on the shore of Coral Bay subsequently closed at the expiration of its lease and the site was filled and leveled.
Controversy has surrounded the construction and completion of the South Shore Road gas station near the entrance to the Westin Resort and adjacent to St. John Market.
Heirs of the Estate of Edward “Power” Boyd have sought government intervention to prevent the development of the property which they claim is in the estate and was illegal transferred to the developer of the station.
The V.I. Attorney General’s Office has not issued a ruling requested by V.I. Police on the prosecution of complaints by heir Dr. Monica Boyd Richards, an attorney, related to the property dispute.
Controversy seemed to follow the project as the truck hauling the first load of fuel for the new station was unable to navigate the steep approach section of the road known as Jacob’s Ladder.
Station owner Nedal Salem directed a tanker transporting new shipment of fuel arrived during the Saturday opening celebration which featured refreshments and a DJ.
Ironically, an equipment malfunction left the island’s other station, E&C Gas, unable to pump regular gasoline on the same day the new competitor was opening.
Coral Bay drivers, meanwhile, are hoping their community will once again have its own gas station.
Boynes Trucking owner James Boynes has announced plans to rebuild a gasoline station for the Coral Bay community on the old gas station site.
Boynes, who is leasing the former Domino’s property from owner Wilma Marsh Monsanto, is hoping for expeditious government approvals for his plan to build a new station to service the isolated community.