Dec 17, 2013 at 11:21 pm
ST. CLOUD (KNSI) - After three hours of presentations, public testimony and discussion, Coldspring's permit for an expansion in southwest St. Cloud cleared the Zoning Board of Appeals.
In a 5-2 vote, the board voted to approve a new application from the granite manufacturer to move and expand quarrying operations by 3.4 acres at its 210 acre quarrying site in southwest St. Cloud.
The company had a great deal of support, as roughly 180 hard-hat wearing employees were in attendance, speaking out on the economic and social impact the company has had on central Minnesota. Representatives from the company highlighted an estimated $3 million impact the company has on the city.
However, city hall was also teeming with people like southwest St. Cloud resident Jerry McCarter, who remain opposed to the approved permit due to concerns over the expansion's potential impact on property values in the future.
Other southwest St. Cloud residents rose to share concerns over blasting noise and environmental damage.
At the end of the meeting, supportive board members expressed that the company needs the chance to grow on their current site, manufacturing the popular "charcoal granite" product, and stressed that residents still have time to express concerns.
Coldspring's Director of Corporate Risk Management Gary Theisen tells KNSI his company will be waiting to hear that feedback before the expansion begins.
The application considered at the meeting was an amended one - the company withdrew their former application in October following concerns by city staff and residents. The decision is still subject to appeal by citizens, the city council or the mayor.
LISTEN BELOW TO COMMENTS FROM THEISEN AND MCCARTER
Temp: 37°F (3°C)
Wind: 10 E