TravelCenters, Shell Oil to create natural gas fueling lanes

Source: Crain’s Cleveland Business

TravelCenters of America LLC (NYSE: TA) has entered into a definitive agreement with Shell Oil Products U.S. to construct and operate a network of natural gas fueling lanes at TravelCenters locations along the U.S. Interstate Highway System.

The agreement provides that Shell will construct at least two natural gas fueling lanes for large over-the-road trucks and related storage capacity at up to 100 TA and Petro Stopping Center locations, at Shell’s cost, within several years. Shell has agreed to supply natural gas fuel to these locations and Shell and TravelCenters separately will market natural gas fuel to their respective customers.

TravelCenters did not estimate the cost of creating the fueling lanes.

TravelCenters said the agreement’s focus is on liquid natural gas, or LNG. The operator of highway travel centers said it expects to monitor customer demand for natural gas fuels and, if appropriate, may adjust its plans to include dispensing of compressed natural gas, or CNG.

Thomas M. O’Brien, president and CEO of TravelCenters, said the agreement “represents a prudent approach to an emerging market.”

“Over time, TA believes natural gas will become a significant fuel for the trucking industry,” Mr. O’Brien said. “Both TA and Shell have been working diligently on site selection, and I am hopeful that our first locations may be operational within one year’s time.”