Plans have now been lodged for the new £65 million motorway services in Solihull which could be open by the end of 2017.
The complex, which would be located between junctions five and six of the M42 and serve travellers heading both directions, is expected to create 300 jobs and attract up to 80,000 vehicles a week.
It would be the first services built in the wider Birmingham area since Hopwood near Bromsgrove in 1999.
Motorway service station operators Extra MSA Group has now submitted a planning application for the new site following public consultation in December 2014.
Chief executive Andrew Long said: "We would anticipate a determination of the planning application towards the end of this year or the first quarter of 2016.
"If there is a positive determination by the end of this year or the beginning of next, there will be a building period of around 12 months. In an ideal world it could be open in two-and-a-half years.
"The need for this facility was first established in 2001. We believe that in an average week it would attract between 75,000 and 80,000 vehicles.
"That would make it one of the top four or five best-used motorway service areas in the UK. These proposals reflect a new way of thinking and a new generation of motorway service areas."
Mr Long said Extra MSA Group had made "significant amendments" to the layout and design of the complex, with the main buildings repositioned and better assimilated into the surrounding area.
A rolling grass roof will be blended into the natural shape of the landscape, linking the facilities building and hotel.
He added: "It is now a much better relationship with the farmhouse building and the landscape.
"We have carefully listened to feedback from all parties involved in the public consultation and have appropriately revised our proposals in various areas to reflect their input."
Extra is working on setting up a daily bus service for staff along nearby Solihull Road and connecting to residential areas within the borough.