Open house given gravel update

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Guests at the April 10 Mountain View County Division 4 open house were given an update on some of the county’s aggregate processing processes and plans.

Reeve Bruce Beattie, the councillor for the division, said the Bergen gravel pit, located at Rge. Rd. 52 and Bergen Road, “is a very good and very significant gravel deposit for the county. It is very good gravel, so it is very much part of future plans for the gravel for the county.

“One of the things that we’ve adopted in our new regulations is what we call a progressive reclamation program. So as one part (of a pit) is developed and used, you only keep a certain area of the gravel pit open to mining at a time. It is to reduce the impact.”

County council recently received a gravel strategy report, he said.

“It looked at how we are going to service the east side (of the county) and the various costs associated with either trying to find more gravel in that part of the county or do we truck it from here?”

Development officer Jessica Ross explained some of the legislative processes involved in developing gravel pits in the county.

She said the approving authority may impose conditions pertaining to aggregate extraction/processing, including the following: standard hours of operation, parameters of operation, setbacks from roads, residential and other developments, buffering and noise attenuation, road use agreements and/or development service agreements, reclamation schedules, and environmental protection measures in accordance with an approved county policy, review of the development permit every five years, and any other matters deemed necessary by the approving authority.

She also spoke about the county’s new existing active gravel pits project.

“Mountain View County council has requested that planning and development services initiate a redesignation project to change the zoning and thus the land use for 31 existing active gravel pits within the county currently operating on lands zoned as agriculture district and bring forward amendments to the land use bylaw,” she said.

“The project includes gravel pits that do not have either a development permit or provincial approval or are outside of their existing permit.

“In addition an amendment to the land use bylaw is proposed to add operating regulations which the gravel pits may be subject to complying with if they do not have an existing development permit or are outside of their existing development permit.”

About 50 people attended the April 10 open house.

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Dan Singleton

Dan Singleton is the editor of the Mountain View Gazette who joined the newspaper in 1994. He covers news, municipal politics and community events in Mountain View County. He is also a longtime columnist for other publications of Mountain View Publishing.