The public hearing on the controversial Lehigh Hanson gravel pit application in the Bearspaw area has entered Day Two.

Residents have risen in strong opposition to the application that is before Rocky View County (RVC) for the third time. RVC turned down previous applications in both 1995 and 2010.

The virtual hearing began yesterday at 9 a.m. and a flood of submissions has seen it extended into today after the meeting was adjourned at 6 p.m. last night.

Lehigh Hanson Materials Limited has made an application to have the zoning of 600 acres of land in the Bearspaw area converted to a direct control district from an agricultural general district.

The land is currently undeveloped and is adjacent to residential parcels to the south and west are residential. Parcels to the north are predominantly unsubdivided quarter sections. 

It is proposed setbacks to adjacent land would vary from 150m to 100m from existing residential developments.. A setback of 69 m would be maintained along the northern portion of the property and a 30m setback is proposed along the eastern property line.

Gravel extraction is proposed to be completed in six stages and would generally proceed from the southeast corner. 

To address traffic and air quality concerns, the applicant said it will establish an overland conveyor system to transport aggregate material from the Scott Pit to Lehigh’s Spy Hill facility in Calgary.

In its submission, Alberta Health Services voiced no objection but provided several comments.

Among concerns expressed by the City of Calgary was the number of wetlands that are being lost due to the development of this site. It contains 48 wetlands and six ephemeral water bodies, and the city believes it would harm the biodiversity in the area.

Over 475 written submissions opposing the development were received by the county and there were about 15 received in favor of the gravel pit.

The numerous email submissions were being read by RVC councillors late this morning. There were also about 80 audio-visual presentations received from opponents to the project.

The public hearing is expected to resume at 1 p.m, today, Feb. 3.