Route to proposed quarry approved

By Cecilia Fox -

MIAMI COUNTY — At their meeting Tuesday, the Miami County Commissioners approved a truck haul route for a proposed surface mine and heard from adjacent property owners.

Piqua Materials recently purchased a property on Farrington Road and has submitted a proposal to surface mine the 93-acre property.

By law, the county engineer is required to devise a route for an ingress, egress, and haul route to the proposed facility. The commissioners could only approve the route or approve it with modifications.

The decision to allow surface mining on the property falls to the Board of Zoning Appeals, the commissioners noted.

Should plans for the quarry be approved, the primary entrance would be located on the west side of Experiment Farm Road just south of Farrington Road. From there, trucks would head to Farrington Road, to County Road 25-A, and from there to Interstate 75.

The roads recommended are all county roads and in good enough condition to handle the increased traffic, County Engineer Paul Huelskamp said.

Piqua Materials currently operates a limestone surface mine in Piqua on Slater Road. The company is in the process of developing a new surface mining operation in Washington Township.

According to a letter to the county on behalf of Piqua Materials, the company anticipates that it will ship 500,000 tons of material annually from the proposed quarry.

The company also estimates that approximately 100 trucks would leave the quarry during a normal operating day and approximately 200 trucks at the height of the construction season.

Neighboring property owners Phillip Neal and Thomas Hartzell spoke out against the development of a surface mining operation on the property.

Neal said he was concerned about increased traffic negatively affecting the roads in the area.

“I’m highly opposed to this. It’s going to have a tremendous negative impact on property values, both home and agricultural within at least a two mile radius,” Hartzell said. “I do not believe putting a pit out there is the right usage for that property.”

The commissioners approved the route, but agreed that there are some concerns about allowing a surface mine in that area.

“It’s something you’d think a county commission would be involved in, but it’s not by Ohio Revised Code,” Commissioner John “Bud” O’Brien said. “We hear what you’re saying.”

In other business, the commissioners approved the purchase of a Caterpillar backhoe on behalf of the Sanitary Engineering Department at a cost of $93,011. An older unit will be traded in at a value of $37,000, making the total cost after trade-in $56,011.

The commissioners also gave final approval to the reduced Transfer Station fees.

The adjustments will lower the disposal charges by $4 per ton. That rate does not include the Ohio EPA fee of $4.75 per ton. The new fees will be established effective April 1.

By Cecilia Fox

Reach Cecilia Fox at or at (937) 552-2205.

Reach Cecilia Fox at or at (937) 552-2205.