Sept. 6, 2012

Contact: Cheryl M. Sparks or Kelly Melhem



New Food Services Open In Phases Through Early October At Chesapeake House; Limited Truck Parking In Harford County

BALTIMORE, MD – The innovative 35-year Public Private Partnership (P3) agreement with Areas USA MDTP, LLC, to redevelop and operate the two aging travel plazas along the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95) in northeast Maryland officially begins Sunday, Sept. 16. 

“The MDTA is looking forward to its 35-year partnership with Areas USA as reconstruction gets underway at the Maryland House,” said MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) Executive Secretary Harold M. Bartlett.  “We thank our customers in advance for their patience during our next two years of transition, growth and improvement at the travel plazas.  With Areas USA, we’re bringing 21st century customer-service facilities to Maryland’s citizens and visitors at no cost to the State.”

Areas USA will keep one travel plaza open throughout the redevelopment to serve customers.  When the Maryland House closes at midnight on Saturday, Sept. 15, the Chesapeake House will remain open for business, with a full complement of new food concepts opening in phases through early October.  However, food service will be limited the week of Sept. 16 as new concessions open, including KFC, Earl of Sandwich, Pizza Hut and Wendy’s.  There also will be no fuel service available for approximately 2-4 days starting at 12:01 a.m. on Sept. 16 while equipment repairs are made.

Truck parking in Harford County will be extremely limited with the closing of the Maryland House.  Truck drivers will need to utilize locations in Cecil County, including the Chesapeake House, the Perryville Weigh Station and privately-owned facilities at the I-95 interchanges.  It is particularly important for truck drivers traveling southbound I-95 to plan ahead since there will be limited truck parking available between Cecil County and the Welcome Center in Howard County.

The new Maryland House is expected to open fall/winter 2013 – with signature Maryland cuisine from Phillips Seafood among its food offerings – and the Chesapeake House will close for reconstruction.  The temporary Chesapeake House will also include Dunkin’ Donuts, Cinnabon, Nathan’s Famous and Freshens.  The new Chesapeake House will feature Wendy’s, Earl of Sandwich, Pizza Hut, KFC, Wetzel’s Pretzels and Caribou Coffee. Concessions for the new Maryland House include Phillips Seafood, Wendy’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Jerry’s Subs & Pizza, Currito, Nathan’s Famous, Auntie Anne’s and Carvel.

The P3 agreement, which will bring more than $400 million in revenue to the State, was approved by the MDTA Board in January and by Maryland’s Board of Public Works in March.  Areas USA is undertaking the $56 million reconstruction of the travel plazas, which is estimated to create 400 jobs for Maryland’s workforce.

Areas USA is partnering with multiple Maryland firms, several of which are minority-owned or women-owned businesses, including:

  • Ayers Saint Gross - Lead designer, Baltimore.
  • Clark Construction - Contractor, Bethesda.
  • Cain Contracting, Inc. - Sub-contractor, Columbia - Minority owned.
  • WBCM - Civil and traffic engineer, Baltimore.
  • Aria Environmental, Inc. - Environmental design, Woodbine - Woman owned.
  • Cagley & Associates - Structural engineer, Rockville - Minority owned.
  • L&J Construction - Snow removal, Baltimore - Minority owned.       
  • 4 Evergreen Lawncare, LLC - Landscape maintenance, Baltimore - Minority owned.
  • NMP Engineering Consultants, Inc. - Water resources engineering, Hunt Valley - Minority owned.

The redevelopment plan includes contemporary design, additional bus parking, free WiFi, LEED Silver certified buildings and a staffed Welcome Center.  The Maryland House will be rebuilt in exactly the same location, while the new Chesapeake House will be built adjacent to its current site. 

Timeline for Travel Plaza Redevelopment:

  • September 16, 2012: Areas USA becomes new concessionaire.  The Maryland House is closed for reconstruction; the Chesapeake House remains open.
  • Fall/Winter 2013/2014: Maryland House reopens for service; Chesapeake House closes for reconstruction.
  • Summer/Fall 2014: Chesapeake House reopens for service.

Renderings of the new travel plazas can be found at  Customers can provide feedback during the transition and reconstruction to Areas USA at 866-820-1178 or