Kennecott Abandons Woodland Road

A surprise move from Kennecott Eagle Minerals.

The company says it’s dropped all plans to build the more than 20–mile long Woodland Road through Marquette county.

But Kennecott still needs a truck route to and from the Eagle Mine.

Instead, the company says it wants to use County Roads 510 and 550, as well as Wright Street in Marquette.

First, those roads would receive improvements that Kennecott wants to pay for.

Kennecott community and government affairs manager Matt Johnson says the work would include total reconstruction, and if other issues with the roads come up in dialogue with the community, the company would correct them as well.

Johnson says there were two reasons for this change.

It’s partly a response to residents’ objections about building woodland road through an undeveloped area.

He also says the company wasn’t sure Woodland Road’s federal permits would be granted in time to keep the Eagle Mine on schedule.

It’s slated to begin production in 2013.