SP-2005-026 Luck Stone Asphalt Plant Relocation (Sign #50)

PROPOSED: Relocate existing asphalt mixing plant site on the 127 ac. Luck Stone quarry property to a 4.1 ac. area on the southwest corner of the property, north of the railroad

ZONING CATEGORY/GENERAL USAGE: RA -- Rural Areas: agricultural, forestall, and fishery uses; residential density (0.5 unit/acre); NR Natural Resource - Overlay to allow natural resource extraction; EC Entrance Corridor - Overlay to protect properties of historic, architectural or cultural significance from visual impacts of development along routes of tourist access; FH Flood Hazard - Overlay to provide safety and protection from flooding

SECTIONS: 18-30.4.02(2) asphalt mixing plants; 18-30.4 natural resource; 18-30.6 entrance corridor overlay; 18-30.3 flood hazard

COMPREHENSIVE PLAN LAND USE/DENSITY:  Rural Areas - preserve and protect agricultural, forestall, open space, and natural, historic and scenic resources/ density (0.5 unit/ acre); Parks and Greenways - parks; greenways; playgrounds; pedestrian and bicycle paths


LOCATION: 2528 Richmond Road (Rt. 250), appx. 1-mi. east of I64 intersection



STAFF: Joan McDowell


Ms. McDowell summarized the staff report. 






Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for Ms. McDowell.


Mr. Cannon asked if the line of sight documents show that the existing asphalt plant is visible from Monticello and the proposed asphalt plant with the height limitation of 83’ would not be visible from Monticello.  He wanted to make sure that is what the Monticello letter says.


Ms. McDowell said that the relocation of the asphalt plant would benefit the line of sight due to the topography and the closest tree line on the Shadwell property that is controlled by Monticello that is under easement.


Mr. Edgerton asked how tall the existing plant was.


Ms. McDowell replied no, but that the applicant is here.


Mr. Edgerton noted that on page 5 of the staff report under factors that are favorable #2 it says that the buffer between the quarry and Route 250 between the proposed asphalt plant and the river will be maintained unless a portion of the southern portion along the river, the County greenway, is installed.  He said that he did not understand what that means.


Ms. McDowell said that this is the area that the greenway trail has been proposed, which is shown in the aerial.


Mr. Edgerton asked if the buffer would be violated by the greenway trail.


Ms. McDowell replied yes, but just on the southern part closest to the river. 


Mr. Edgerton asked when staff was referring to the buffer if she was talking about totally undisturbed and that once a trail was put in that it would disturb it a little bit.


Ms. McDowell replied yes.  The trails would be class B and would be fairly narrow.


Mr. Cilimberg noted that it was a by-right allowance.


Ms. Joseph asked Mr. Mahon if they would use discretion to preserve large trees and move the trail around them.


Mr. Mahon replied that was exactly true, which was why the plan shows that the width of the greenway varies.  It is so they can work with the contours and topography of the land to have something that fits without having to construct it.  It is a class b trail, which is a responsive trail to the existing land conditions.


Ms. Joseph said that their expectations are that they are not going to see a huge swath of trees removed.


Mr. Mahon replied no.  As a matter of fact, with Luck’s Stone permission, they have sketched the route in and had the inmate crew out to clear the route that the trail will follow so that they could go down and see what it is that they are asking for.  What they see on the plan right now, except for some small caliper trees that they took out, are merely what is now on the ground and the way it would be established with very little impact.


There being no further questions, Ms. Joseph opened the public hearing and invited the applicant to address the Commission.


Ben Thompson, representative for Luck Stone, presented a drawing of the site for the Commission to review.  Ms. Ambler and Ms. McDowell did such a thorough presentation that it left he very little to add.  He reiterated that Luck Stone has proudly been a part of Albemarle’s business community since the 1930’s.  They have worked in conjunction with S.L. Williamson since 1961.  They began this application process last October to relocate Blair Williamson’s and her father’s existing asphalt plant.  It is important to note that this application is solely to relocate an existing use on site.  Because the plant predates the zoning ordinance it currently operates at a grandfathered status.  The need for the special use permit is based on changing the plant’s physical location.  They are not expanding the operation and actually limiting the hours.  The current asphalt plant is at a greater elevation than what they are proposing.  The line of sight issue is really a big issue for Monticello.  It moves further away from Stone Robinson Elementary School and the move away from them will impact the school to a lesser extent.  That is why they both Monticello and Stone Robinson Elementary School have graciously written a letter in support.  They started this application even before it came to the County. They set down with Monticello and Stone Robinson School.  Through the process they have also been speaking to their various neighbors.  It has really become a project that has brought them into the fold and they have given their input with.  As mentioned they have been operating in Albemarle since 1960.  While it has various components that have been interchanged since then, this plant is going to go away.  In addition to moving, it is going to be an entirely new plant.  With that it will become within the mechanical standards and increased controls of today.  The new plant is equipped with modern dust suppression, sound dampening equipment, recycling capacity and emission controls.  In his terms, it is light years ahead of what is existing today.  With this application the County has provided a list of conditions to address among other things hours of operation, noise, internal traffic flow, dust suppression, maintaining of existing buffers, lighting and height limitations.  All of these conditions are acceptable to them.  He appreciated the Commission’s time this evening and respectfully requests their positive recommendations to the Supervisors.  He pointed out that several individuals present this evening are Kevin Black, Vice-President for this location, Blair Williamson, President and operator of S.L. Williamson, Phil Tippet, with the manufacturers of the plant and Scott Cook, of Luck Stone’s engineering department.


Mr. Edgerton said that Mr. Thompson mentioned that the recommendation was to reduce the operating hours.  He asked what the current operating hours are.


Mr. Thompson replied that it was 365 days a year 24 hours a day.  They don’t operate at that, but that is the current allowance.


Blair Williamson noted that she could count on one hand the number of Saturdays they have operated and zero nights. 


Mr. Cannon asked if they started operations in 1961, and Mr. Thompson agreed.


Mr. Cannon said that there would be water limitations.  Also, they would be subject to the clean air act limitations that the plant was not subject to when they came on line in 1961.


Ms. Williamson asked to answer that question.  Currently, they have various permits through DEQ.  They have an air quality permit that they received in 1961.  However, they report annually.  Because they are not considered a major producer to DEQ on any kind of air quality issues they just submit their data on their tonnages and outputs.  They just monitor all of the asphalt plants across the state. There is some visual sampling, but no actual sampling.  They check for opacity.  This plant was built in 1961 or the shell was built in 1961, but it has been upgraded quite a bit.  But, the new plant is going to be a Cadillac compared to a Model T.  It is just light years ahead of what is there now.  They have an oil discharge contingency plan that is also called a VPES plan that they renew every five years.  Our current plan expires in 2011.  They have a SPCC plan, which is a spill prevention plan.  It talks about any kind of control over anything that would spill.  They don’t use any water. It is all just rock, asphalt and sand as basic ingredients.


Mr. Cannon asked if they don’t have any discharge of the surface water.


Ms. Williamson replied no, except what falls on them from the sky.  Currently all of their water falls into the pit, which it is going to do at their new location.  The new plant is about the same height as the old plant.  But, in elevation they are 50’ higher than they would be in the new location.  So they will be virtually unseen. 


Ms. Joseph invited comment from other members of the public.


Steve Peters said that they are the one residential entity in the area being impacted on Auburn Hill Farm.  They had faxed a letter to staff today, which staff did not have time to include in the packet.  They received a letter from the applicant covering a couple of other issues.  The letter covered technical things like an odor and that it is a better plant. They get very technical.  The letter basically assured us that it is not going to negatively impact us in any fashion from moving it over to the other location.  If something comes up, they will rectify it for us. Ms. McDowell and the applicant met with them several times and addressed all of their concerns. They have been a good neighbor. In the past they have done what they have said that they were going to do.  He was sure that would continue.  They had a lot of concerns because they have a little historic farm.  They were in the middle of remodeling the farm and plan on being buried on it.  The County and the applicant have been very good and spent all the time necessary to cover the basics of it with them.  He submitted his letter to the Commission for their review.  (Attachment – Letter from Steve Peters to ensure that they would not be negatively impacted.)


There being no further public comment, Ms. Joseph closed the public hearing to bring the matter before the Commission.


Mr. Morris commended the applicant for having talked with their neighbors about the request previously.


Mr. Cannon felt that this is an improvement for the environment as well as for the economic operation of the facility.  Therefore, he was in favor of it.


Ms. Joseph echoed Mr. Morris’ comment because it is a good policy to go and talk to your neighbors before you come before the Commission because it is so much easier.  The neighbors find out things and nobody is blind sighted.  She really appreciated that.


Motion:  Mr. Craddock moved, Mr. Morris seconded, to approve SP-2005-026, Luck Stone Asphalt Plant Relocation with the recommended conditions, as amended changing the dates to the records just received, as stated.


1.             Special Use Permit 2005-26 shall be developed in general accord with the concept plan, titled "Luck Stone Corporation Special Use Permit Asphalt Plant Relocation Conceptual Plan", dated August 1, 2006, and Cross Sections (Line of Sight) Plans for Auburn Hill dated 10/27/05 and for Monticello dated 11/22/05 (Attachment A).  However, the Zoning Administrator may approve revisions to the concept plan to allow compliance with the Zoning Ordinance. 

2.             The existing asphalt plant shall be demolished and removed from the property no later than two months following the start of operation of the new plant.  

3.             Approval of this Special User Permit shall expire when the adjacent quarry is no longer in operation. Hours and days of operation shall not exceed 7:00 AM to 10:00 PM Monday through Saturday and 7:00 AM to 12:00 AM Monday through Saturday for no more than 60 days per year.

4.             Sound/noise barriers and attenuation measures, as described in the ASTEC, Inc. Certified Engineers Report (Attachment C), will be provided as necessary to comply with the County “noise” requirements (Code 18-4.18).  The applicant shall identify these measures on the site development plan and the asphalt plant building permit plans.

5.             Plant site lighting will comply with County “outdoor lighting” requirements (Code 18-4.17).

6.             A copy of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality “construction permit” shall be submitted to the county engineer prior to approval of a final site plan for the asphalt plant.

7.             A special use permit for fill within the flood hazard overlay district shall be obtained, to allow the raising of the ground elevation adjacent to Barn Branch and creation of a levee to protect the quarry and its operations from the 100-year flood, prior to approval of a site plan for the asphalt plant.

8.             A Conditional Letter of Map Revision (CLOMR) is required to be obtained by the applicant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and a copy provided to the county engineer prior to the issuance of a building permit for the asphalt plant.

9.             Prior to County issuance of a zoning clearance and certificate of occupancy for the plant, the applicant shall: 

·         Submit and obtain county engineer approval of as-built drawings for the completed and stabilized levee (including geotechnical engineer certification of the adequate compaction of the fill).

·         Provide the county engineer with documentation demonstrating that the information necessary to address the conditions of the CLOMR has been submitted to FEMA. 

11.         The buffer area along Route 250 shall be maintained to provide a visual barrier between the operations on the site and Route 250. 

12.         The asphalt plant shall be designed in a manner to provide forward circulation for trucks as they enter, load, and exit the area, as depicted on the plan titled "Luck Stone Corporation, Charlottesville Plant Site Map Asphalt Plant Relocation" and dated August 8, 2006 (Attachment B).

13.         No direct conveyance of storm water from the asphalt plant area to Barn Branch shall be permitted.

14.         The natural landscape area between the CSX Railroad south of the proposed site and the Rivanna River on TMP 79-7B shall be maintained in its current natural state, as shown on Attachment D, with the exception of allowing for a greenway trail, should a greenway trail be installed in the future.

15.         The maximum height of any portion of the asphalt plant shall not exceed 83 feet, as measured from the finished site grade.


The motion passed by a vote of 6:0.  (Commissioner Higgins was absent.) 


Ms. Joseph stated that SP-2005-026, Luck Stone Asphalt Plant Relocation, would go to the Board of Supervisors on October 4 with a recommendation for approval.



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