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Rezoning, fence proposal to be focus of public session

September 17, 1999|By DAN KULIN /Staff Writer

Public hearing

* A proposal to amend the Washington County Zoning Ordinance to require mining companies to put fences around their quarries, and rezoning requests for 186 acres around the Boonsboro quarry, 113 acres near the Interstate 70 and the Sharpsburg Pike interchange and 1.74 acres near the intersection of Oak Ridge Drive and Maryland Route 65.

* Monday, Sept. 20

* 7 p.m.

* Court Room No. 1, Washington County Courthouse in Hagerstown.

Hearings on a request to rezone about 186 acres near Boonsboro for mining activities and a proposal to require mining companies to surround their quarries with fences highlight a joint public session of the Washington County Commissioners and the County Planning Commission Monday.

The session will begin at 7 p.m. at the County Courthouse.

Martin Marietta Materials Inc., a Raleigh, N.C.-based company which operates what is known as the "Boonsboro quarry" along Benevola Church Road, is seeking to have an industrial mineral floating zone added to the existing agricultural designation around the quarry.

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According to planning commission documents, the company is seeking the industrial mining overlay so it may use the land for office facilities, processing facilities, storage of materials and the building of berms.

"It is not anticipated that any quarry expansion will occur in terms of new pits or new permits form the state," the documents state.

The company has been mining at the site, which includes two quarry pits, since 1962.

Expanding the area to be mined would require surface mining permits from the Maryland Department of the Environment. No such permits have been applied for, according to planning commission documents.

Michael T. Mooers, a Hagerstown resident and paramedic with Community Rescue Service, has requested the county amend the zoning ordinance to require mining companies to surround their quarries with fences.

The request was prompted by a May 22 fatal accident at an unfenced quarry east of Hagerstown. A 6-year-old boy, whose back yard adjoined the quarry, fell about 100 feet into a quarry pit.

According to planning commission documents, the County Engineering Department supports the proposed amendment and at least one company is against it. In a letter to the county, Barry L. Miller, manager of safety, environmental and quality at Redland Brick Inc., said the proposed amendment would be too costly.

The Monday meeting will also include hearings on rezoning requests from Cross Creek Builders and Outlet Village of Hagerstown.

Cross Creek Builders is requesting that 113 acres southwest of the interchange of Interstate 70 and the Sharpsburg Pike near Hagerstown currently zoned HI-1 highway interchange be rezoned to HI-2 highway interchange.

According to planning commission documents, the company is planning to build a 461-unit residential development on the property. Residential developments are not permitted in zones designated HI-1 highway interchange.

Outlet Village of Hagerstown is requesting that 1.74 acres southwest of the intersection of Oak Ridge Drive and Maryland Route 65 near Hagerstown be rezoned to HI-1 highway interchange. The property is currently zoned HI-2 highway interchange.

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