Negaunee Township gravel pit one step closer to fruition

NEGAUNEE TWP. — A gravel pit in Negaunee Township is one step closer to being constructed.

The Negaunee Township Planning Commission approved a conditional use permit for the pit at its meeting last night.

The township is aiming to put the pit in off of County Road 510 just south of the bridge over the Dead River.

The project has been in the works for some time, but had previously been rejected by both the planning commission and the zoning board of appeals.

“Kona Ridge Mining appealed that to the circuit court and the circuit court issued an opinion that reversed the appeal at the township level, and ordered the township to issue a conditional use permit for the gravel pit,” said Negaunee Twp. Attorney Kevin Koch.

The project would cover 30 acres and the pit would be used on an as needed basis.

Residents have shared their concern regarding, among other reasons, the effect on the environment.

“The people who live next door to the proposed development have been very actively involved and very actively opposed to the development of a gravel pit,” Koch said. “They have attended the two planning commission meetings that have been held recently about the issuance of the permit, mostly to stay up on what is happening and to be apprised of what is coming.”

The Zoning Board of Appeals will decide whether to issue the permit or not next week.

If they decide in favor of issuance then Kona Ridge Mining can decide when to begin operations.