Tuolumne residents will no longer need to travel out of town to fill their tanks.
The Bear Creek filling station and convenience store opened across the street from the Black Oak Casino on Aug. 1, much to the satisfaction of many Tuolumne motorists who previously didn’t have a local gas stop.
The 12-pump gas station and 4,500-square-foot mini-mart was built on a land that had been used for overflow parking for until the casino’s six-story, 1,000-space parking garage was finished in 2009.
The Bear Creek station is run by the Tuolumne Band of Mi-Wuk Indians and is designed to service both local motorists and tourists who are in town to visit the casino, according to Black Oak marketing manager Al O’Brien.
The project was expected to be completed in June, but was delayed until early August because electrical and utility lines were being installed in the area for a nearby hotel, he said.
The hotel is expected to have 160 rooms and a 150-seat conference center. It is being built in the lot at the front of the casino.
“The hotel is the next step we need to take to make this a competitive resort destination,” O’Brien said.
In the long term, the Mi-Wuk Tribe also plans to build a golf course and 79-unit housing development on a 350-acre plot off Tuolumne Road that was once the West Side Lumber Company