New Details Emerge in Delay of Louisiana’s First Buc-ee’s

Buc-ee’s first-ever convenience store in Louisiana was supposed to hold its ribbon cutting ceremony in Ruston in 2025.

But the clean restrooms, cool knick-knacks, chopped brisket sandwiches, and Beaver Nuggets might have to wait a little longer. No one presently knows the store’s exact opening date. When asked to explain the delay, one state official implied it had much to do with the new Buc-cees’ proximity to Ruston Junior High School.

Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) spokeswoman Erin Buchanan told The Hayride on Friday that Buc-ee’s officials must hire a consultant — of that company’s own choosing — to conduct a traffic study as well as an Interchange Modification Report (IMR).

That study, Buchanan said via email, must capture “nearby school traffic patterns.”

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Buchanan said traffic impact studies analyze traffic volume patterns and nearby pedestrian and bicycle activities. When completed, the study might propose whether new roadways and intersections are needed at the Buc-ee’s site. Buchanan said such studies are standard protocol “when significant traffic generators such as gas stations, truck stops or subdivisions are developed and could impact traffic on state routes.”

Ruston Mayor Ronny Walker told The Lincoln Parish Journal that the traffic study will take 180 days. The IMR, Walker went on to say, is scheduled to take 12 months.

Buchanan told The Hayride that Buc-ee’s chosen consultant must collect data while the 2022-2023 school year is still in session.


“If traffic counts are not completed prior to school closing for the summer, the consultant would have to wait until school resumes in September to collect this data,” Buchanan said.

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“This delay could potentially affect the timeline of the project, but this would not be the result of DOTD’s policies.”

As The Journal reported, planners announced that construction crews will build the Ruston Buc-ee’s on the north side of Interstate-20 at Tarbutton Road.

Ruston Junior High is already located on Tarbutton Road.

Buc-ee’s, according to its website, has three locations in Alabama, two in Florida, two in Georgia, one in Kentucky, one in South Carolina, one in Tennessee, and 34 in Texas.



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