Stock photo of a new asphalt plant.

Tyrone residents opposed to rezoning for asphalt plant need to make their voices heard

The Tyrone Township Planning Commission has received a request to rezone Farm Residential FR vacant land just north of Center Road and west of Old U.S. 23 in order to develop an asphalt manufacturing plant and warehouses with a new zoning M2, which is heavy industrial. The Capital Asphalt project is to be developed by Tri-City Developments.

A preliminary review began during the planning commission’s Zoom meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 9. The Zoom program had maximum capacity of 100, and several people could not attend. Many residents voiced their opposition to this rezoning at the call to public.

My father purchased our farm in 1965, and I have been selling organically grown produce as Pallister Farms at the Fenton, Linden, Hartland, and Highland farmer’s markets. The air pollution and toxic particulates of this ashplant plant will greatly hinder my attempt to be an organic farmer.

There is a Facebook group Citizens Resisting Asphalt Plant which now has more than 2,800 members that is for citizens who are opposed to the building of this asphalt plant at Center Road and U.S. 23.

Tyrone Township residents and those nearby in Fenton, Linden and Fenton Township, are all opposed to having such a facility there due to its proximity to residential areas because of the negative health and environmental effects, excess noise, traffic, odor, and decrease in property values for the entire area. Asphalt plants are allowed to emit tons of hazardous pollutants each yearincluding: carbon monoxide, lead, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene, and other particulates.

The residents of this community are angry that even though they voice their opposition to rezoning requests, the township board approves them anyway. A recent example was a rezoning of farmland with a special use permit to allow a 1,500-plot green cemetery. In a green burial, bodies are buried without a vault or conventional casket. Studies show that cemeteries of this kind have a high potential for groundwater contamination, and as a human body decomposes, it releases toxic chemicals such as cadaverine and putrescine. The township board voted 5-0 to approve this special land use permit despite the many resident’s objections.

The township board will make its decision on the asphalt plant rezoning request after the planning commission provides their recommendations. The next Tyrone township Board meeting is to be held at 7 p.m. March 3, and the next Tyrone Township Planning Commission meeting is to be held at 7 p.m. on March 6. It is recommended that residents attend these meetings to express their concerns.

John Pallister
Tyrone Township

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