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Luck Quarry Plans Proceed

PRINCE EDWARD – The site of Luck Stone's planned quarry just west of Dowdy's Corner is mostly quiet since County officials gave the zoning green light last year. Still, it takes time to put a quarry into operation and work – though not so visible – has proceeded.

“Things are going well,” commented Ben Thompson, Luck Stone's real estate manager, told The Herald. “Got a couple areas of focus right now.”

Currently, they are specifically looking at wetland delineation. The site has been field verified, but they are now engaged in the formal process of delineation, Thompson explained.

They've completed a full phase one on the property in cultural resources prior to their submittal to the County. That is being further reviewed and researched to determine significance.

“And that entails looking at historic maps, doing deed research on the property and then, ultimately, it'll be determined out of that study if continued work needs to be done on it or whether that concludes all the cultural (work) that needs to occur on the site,” Thompson explained.

They are also doing a continued hydro-geologic assessment, he also detailed, which he cited is really a two-fold undertaking. One is a continued work on ground water – the bulk of which was done prior to their submittal to the County – and a dam study to look at the Town's reservoir adjacent to the site.

“We are also in conversations with VDOT, as we speak, in anticipation of filing for our entrance permit,” Thompson said.

All of the studies roll into their DMME application, the Department of Mineral, Mines and Energy.

They expect to submit the application in 2011.

Prior to any opening of the facility, and should they get the permit, Thompson detailed, they would hold another community meeting.

Asked about seeing some work at the site or maybe some mining activity, Thompson offered, “…I don't want to be presumptuous by putting a date out there because…so much is out of our hands with the…permit, but we still are very committed to the property and continue to watch development patterns and are very in tune with what's going on in Farmville, just through coordination with our Burkeville quarry.”

He agreed that they still see the market and the need for the material that's there.

“…With the comprehensive plan of Prince Edward County, as the growth continues to occur…Route 15 south and then west along 460, that's really a driver for opening Prince Edward,” Thompson said.

While the County is not immune from the economic slowdown, he noted that “the one great thing about Prince Edward is it's such a stable area…and that's really the reason why we wanted to be there to begin with and just…steady growth, good growth that you can really plan around the need and the need is there. And…we watched the market for a long time, looked for a property for a long time and…the performance (of) Prince Edward from a growth standpoint's been consistent with what we thought it would be.”

The Prince Edward site would serve the area. “But when you have multiple quarries,” Thompson added, “you can play together and it's really a positive for both us and the pricing in the area and the customer orientation.”