When Mark Jones took over the Chevron gas station he owns here more than three decades ago, it was in a sleepy and undeveloped part of town in Shreveport, Louisiana. Quickly, though, things changed. A nearby General Motors truck assembly plant opened in 1982 and gave way to a crush of development. Neighbourhoods sprouted to house the factory's 3,000 employees, and a stable of businesses popped up to support the community.