Tuesday, October 16, 2001
Steamboat Springs The Routt County Planning Commission will conduct a conceptual review Thursday night of a plan to develop a new gravel pit including asphalt and concrete plants about 6 miles south of Steamboat Springs.
The gravel pit is being proposed for the More Family Ranch near the base of Rabbit Ears Pass and accessed via Colorado Highway 131.
A ranch house on the property is currently occupied by Norton "Gonk" Jacobs, part owner of More Family Ranch.
The developer is Western Mobile Northern Inc, more commonly known as Lafarge Inc. The 105-acre site represents a fraction of the 670-acre ranch. The current proposal represents the third time in 14 months someone has proposed a gravel pit on the ranch. The previous proposals in summer and fall of 2000 never went forward.
The original proposal by Jarle Halsnes did not include asphalt or concrete plants. Two months later, Halsnes, together with Elam Construction and Native Excavating, filed an application with the county that would have mined 89 acres and included the concrete and asphalt plants. That application was withdrawn before it was reviewed by planning commission.
The More Ranch includes a stretch of the Yampa River and abuts131 on the west and U.S. 40 on the east. The river is about 1,200 feet from the southern boundary of the proposed mine site, according to documents prepared by County Planner John Eastman.
The mine would be situated close to the base of the mountains on the eastern boundary.
The developers project annual gravel sales of 400,000 tons a year. The proposal estimates that the mining operation could generate 54,000 truck trips (one-way) annually.
As many as 362 truck trips could be generated on a daily basis during the peak three months of operation each year. The developers predict that 75 percent of the truck trips would travel north toward Steamboat Springs.
Requested hours of operation are 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday. However, the mine operators would like to begin warming up their equipment at 6:45 a.m. and continuing maintenance work until 10 p.m.