Permitting – March 2014

Rogers Group Seeks Permit
The last legal hurdle is to follow up on a request made to the Tippecanoe County Board of Zoning Appeals for a conditional use permit. The BZA will weigh the request at its June meeting. Not all are pleased with the proposed Americus stone quarry, specifically those who live in the 200 homes within a mile or so of the proposed site – 524 acres between the Wabash River and Old Indiana 25.

Drainage Plan an Issue
A consultant has recommended Lake County, Ind., officials deny a drainage permit for Singleton Stone’s proposed Singleton Stone quarry, but county officials aren’t yet ready to act on that advice, according to Lowell Mike Gangstad, of the Evansville, Ind., engineering firm of Bernadin Lochmueller and Associates, concluded the drainage plan for the proposed quarry near Interstate 65 and Ind. 2 couldn’t ensure the integrity of local drainage systems if it must pump millions of gallons of seeping groundwater out of its excavation and into local waterways.

That provoked a sharp response from James Wieser, a Schererville, Ind., attorney representing the quarry developer, and caution from Lake County Surveyor William Emerson Jr., whose office oversees the county drainage system. Wieser said the developer must be given a chance to prove the consultant’s fears are groundless and that the firm’s advice should not be adopted by the Lake County Drainage Advisory Board, a group of property owners concerned about drainage matters.

Singleton Stone LLC won zoning approval in 2010 to begin work southeast of Lowell, Ind., on 600 acres of land owned by the Van Kalker family, despite opposition from a group of south county farmers who say pumping at the quarry could dry up nearby irrigation wells and flood downstream fields.

Quarry Water May be Benefit
The town of New Windsor, Md., is closer to a water agreement with Lehigh Cement Co. that would secure an additional water source for the town, according to the Carroll County Times. Wording on an agreement was passed by the Town Council at a work session that would allow New Windsor to divert underground water percolating from Lehigh’s proposed quarry operations to the town’s wastewater treatment plant – creating a new source of usable water for the town.

Under the plan, the town would be able to build a pumping facility and pipeline to transfer water from the quarry, which would be located on approximately 535 acres of land owned by Lehigh that is mostly bound by Md. 31 to the east and south of the town. The water from the quarry would be diverted at no cost to New Windsor.

The town has been in discussions with Lehigh over the plan for about three years, said Mayor Neal Roop. Although quarry operations are not expected to start for at least a few years, Roop said he wanted to ensure the town had another sustainable source of water for future use.

Blasting A Non-Issue
No blasting will happen at a proposed rock quarry at Pryor Road and Interstate 470 in Lee’s Summit, Mo., according to the Lee’s Summit Journal. The project’s owner, Flip Short, has announced that instead of explosives, the excavators will use only a mechanical system that uses hydraulics to expand wedges in holes drilled into the rock to split it. Then it can be broken into smaller pieces by another machine, a hoe-ram, and crushed. At a Feb. 6 meeting, Short elaborated on his plan.

Critics re-emphasized their worries about dust, noise, vibrations, truck traffic and fear of an unsightly quarry. The project is to reclaim about 70 acres of land along the highway, which is undercut by a limestone mine, and too unstable to support building new structures above it. Short said he thinks amending the current application to forbid blasting is a good idea, to give future assurance to residents, if for some reason he is no longer owner.

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