Aggregate News

               

Walker Aggregates, Duntroon

 

 

 

In the west, St. Mary’s Cement is in Grey County.  Across the road in Simcoe County, Walker Aggregates’ original pit (116 acres) is south of County Road 91, the expansion (168 acres) is north of CR 91.

 

Walker Aggregates Expansion Proposal (Licence 3514)

 

Location

 

County Road 91, west of Duntroon, around 45 minutes west of Barrie / 90 minutes north west of Toronto

 

Existing Operation – part Lot 24, concession 12; Township of Clearview, Simcoe County

Expansion Proposal – Lot 25, concession 12; part of Lot 26, conc. 12; part of lot 25, conc.11; Township of Clearview, Simcoe County

 

 

Overview

 

The Duntroon quarry was established in 1965.  In 2003 Walker Aggregates anticipated that the existing site would be emptied of limestone by 2012 and proposed to expand the site across the road to a new parcel of property.  The local township (Clearview) and county (Simcoe) were on-side as Walker Aggregates was an established business and good employer (~30 employees). 

 

However, the existing quarry is located in the Niagara Escarpment.  While the original site was grand fathered under the Niagara Escarpment Plan, the Niagara Escarpment Commission found that the “expansion” would be detrimental to the natural environment of the escarpment since it would be at one of the narrowest corridor points.  In addition, it can be debated whether the proposal is an “expansion” or a “new” quarry.  The “expansion” is across the road and almost twice the size of the original operation. 

 

The proposal has resulted in a precedent-setting case where the Niagara Escarpment Commission had to fight to have the final say on development within recognized escarpment boundaries.  In 2014 the NEC lost its case.

 

 

Niagara Escarpment

 

The Niagara Escarpment is an internationally recognized landform and the cornerstone of Ontario’s Greenbelt. A landscape of rich biodiversity, home to hundreds of Ontario's Species at Risk, vital watersheds, agricultural areas and 450-million-year-old geological history, the Niagara Escarpment is a treasure to protect for future generations of Ontarians.

 

Technical Definition - Wikipedia link

 

Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment Commission (NEC - www.escarpment.org) is an agency of the Ministry of Natural Resources, and works on behalf of the people of Ontario to preserve the Niagara Escarpment as a continuous natural landscape.  The Niagara Escarpment is a protected area under the Province of Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment Planning and Development Act, 1973, and the Niagara Escarpment Plan (NEP) Canada’s first large-scale environmental land use plan.

 

 

“Expansion” Proposal

 

Walker Aggregates Inc. has proposed to expand their 57.47 ha (142 acres) licenced/116 acres extraction operation by another 127.02 ha (319 acres) licenced/168 acres extraction below-water-table (39 meters/128 ft) yielding 43 million tonnes or another 14-40 years of supply of high-quality limestone. 

 

The proposed hours of operation would be Monday to Friday (24 hours), Monday to Friday (6am-5pm), Saturday (6am-6pm) with no shipping on Saturday and closed Sunday[1].  Any operation outside of those hours would be on an emergency basis only [?]

 

Rock drilling would be restricted to the period between 7am to 7pm [one hour outside the hours of operation?]

 

Blasting would be variable throughout the duration of the hours of operation and would not be permitted on holidays nor prior to 8am or after 6pm on any day [provincial standards].

 

The company has come to an agreement with Clearview Township to purchase county road 91 and would re-reroute local traffic accordingly.  (Proposal + Summary .pdf)

 

Long-term the quarry rehabilitation would revert the pit to a lake surrounded by trees.

 

Road Settlement Agreements with Clearview Township, Simcoe County

 

 

 

 

Timeline

 

1965 start of operations (as Georgian Aggregates and Construction Inc.?)

1995 Walker Industries Holdings Ltd. assumed full ownership of Georgian Aggregates and Construction Inc.

2003 Application for expansion

2006 Georgian Aggregates applies for Niagara Escarpment Plan (NEP) amendment (EBR IB06E3048) – approved June 17, 2012

2007 Georgian Aggregates and Construction Inc. changed its name to Walker Aggregates Inc.

2008 May-13 Application for Joint Board Hearing amendment (EBR 010-3114)

2008 Oct-14 Approval of Joint Board Hearing amendment (EBR 010-4431)

2009 Jan-27 Public Meeting

2012 Jun Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) hearing ends (after 139 days over 13 months)

2012 Nov-14 Application to expand existing operation for one more year of extraction (EBR 011-7583) [taking from a bench within a rehabilitated area].  Approved 4-Apr-2013.

2013 Apr-25 Niagara Escarpment Commision (NEC) vs Walker in judicial court re: precedence of NEP vs ARA & PPS

2013-Jul-10 Judicial Court dismisses NEC application – quarry can go-ahead (decision)

2014-Jan-31 Development permit applications received by Niagara Escarpment Commission (NEC)

2014-Dec-17 EBR 012-3245 Approval of licensee proposed amendment to a site plan – ARA s. 16 (2)

2015 EBR 012-5792 Application for renewal of Environmental Compliance Approval (air)

2015-04-14 Approval granted for EBR 012-3245 proposal to cut tunnel beneath County Road 91 [decision loaded into EBR registry on 2016-09-02 à 1½ years later]

2015 Autumn NEC denies Clearview Township’s application to upgrade Sideroad 26/27 west of the 10th Line to the municipal boundary based on the fact that it is not “essential” (article)

2016 Jun-15 Special closed meeting of Township of Clearview (source) leading to approval for the Walker expansion to start shipping despite lack of NEP amendment or NEC agreement

2018 Aug Clearview Township continues to appeal NEC decision to Niagara Escarpment Hearing Office (NEHO) (article)

2018 Aug-18 Status update on the township’s appeal

2019 May-8 Clearview Township Public Meeting re: Niagara Escarpment Plan appeal to upgrade Sideroad 26/27 (ERO 013-4952 to May 21, 2019)

 


Approvals/Permit Requirements

 

- Township of Clearview official plan amendment & zoning by-law amendment

- Niagara Escarpment plan amendment

- Niagara Escarpment development permit

- Aggregate Resources Act licence amendment

- Nottawasaga and Grey Sauble Conservation Authorities fill permit

- MOE permit to take water

- Aggregate licence 607841 granted in conjunction with licence 3514

 

 

Advocates

 

Both the Township of Clearview and County of Simcoe Boards are staunch advocates for keeping Walker’s business in operation.  A majority of Members readily promote the economic benefits including access to aggregate, sponsorship funds and jobs.  The municipality’s legal bills are paid for by the company (article).

 

 

Grassroots Opposition

 

Blue Mountain Watershed Trust

 

www.clearviewcommunitycoalition.com

 

Residents of Grey Highlands (.pdf)

 

 

Species at Risk

 

- American Hart’s Tongue fern found on the property will have a 100-meter buffer

- Butternut trees

- Bobolink birds

 

 

Notes/Comments:

-      Walker expects to ship 1.2-1.5 million tonnes per year

-      21 people laid off at the end of the lifespan of the existing extraction operation in 2012

-      Walker knew that the site was ending its extraction life when they purchased the business, and presumably had investigated to get a sense of whether the expansion was possible.  They had not expected to get such a fight from the community.

-      Walker has asked to licence an area significantly bigger than the extraction area (319 vs 168 acres) ostensibly so that “planting and mitigation measures proposed can be identified as licence requirements under the Aggregate Resources Act” but more likely because it is easier to get an “amendment” than it is to expand or licence a new quarry.

-      Site contains class 1, 2 and 3 soils, fragmented by lower quality soils although the site is not considered a prime agricultural area in Walker’s assessment.

-      Close to headwaters of Beaver and Pretty rivers and Batteaux creek

-      Whether “expanding” across the road to a “new parcel of property” is truly an “expansion” rather than a “new quarry does not seem to be being debated.  However, it should be noted that the Ministry of Natural Resources has greater requirements for a new site versus an expanded site (would the operation still be grandfathered?).  Viewed from another angle, it is difficult to believe that in the case of putting an addition on your house, the word “expansion” would apply if the addition was almost twice as big as the original structure and across the road.

           

  

News - Walker Aggregates, Duntroon (most current first)

 

Date

Source

Title

Comment

2019-05-11

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview sideroad upgrade addresses safety, environmental issues

Ian Adams

(.pdf)

2019-05-10

Creemore Echo

Public has its say on 26/27 SR project

(.pdf)

2019-05-10

Creemore Echo

Much Objection from Grey Highlands

Trina Berlo

2019-05-09

Grey Highlands

Public Meeting Minutes from Council (.pdf)

 

2019-05-07

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview residents not digging quarry agreement

Ian Adams

(.pdf)

2019-03-22

Environmental Registry

Township of Clearview (c/o Steven Sage, CAO) - Approval of an amendment to the Niagara Escarpment Plan

ERO #013-4952

2018-12-16

AWARE-Simcoe.ca

Clearview, Simcoe sidestep public in plans for Side Road 26/27 reconstruction

George Powell, Blue Mountain Watershed Trust

2018-08-16

Simcoe.com/Wasaga Sun

Plan to Close Clearview Road Stirs Residents, Environmental Groups

Ian Adams

- Quarry Aware, Doug Dingeldein

(.pdf)

2018-08-02

Newswire.ca

Residents Raise Safety and Environmental Concerns Over Secret Clearview/Walker Road Deal

Quarry Aware

2017-05-23

Blue Mountain Watershed Trust

Side Road 26/27 Update

George Powell

2017-05-12

Simcoe.com/Wasaga Sun

Road improvement delays could be costly to Clearview

Ian Adams

(.pdf)

2017-03-01

Niagara This Week

Walker Industries wins provincial industry award for Vineland Quarry

Luke Edwards

- Vineland Quarries and Crushed Stone

2016-09-15

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview Township road hearing delayed for Niagara Escarpment Plan amendment application

Ian Adams

- amendment application to include request to encroach into two wetlands

2016-09-09

Creemore Echo

Walker starts shipping, council seeks NEP amendment

Trina Berlo

2016-08-05

Environmental Registry

EBR 012-5792 Walker Aggregates application for Environmental Compliance Approval (air)

 

2016-06-22

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview Township continues fight with Niagara Escarpment Commission to upgrade sideroad

Ian Adams

2016-04-17

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview Township business makes first donation to Collingwood hospital emergency department renovation

 

2016-04-08

Clearview Township

Notice- County Road 91 Closure & Reconstruction

Steve Sage

- CR 91, CR124 to Conc 10.

2016-03-17

Barrie Examiner*

Roadwork dividing community near Duntroon

Gisele Winton Sarvis

2016-03-11

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Lines drawn as hearing begins on Clearview Township application to upgrade 26-27 Sideroad

Ian Adams

2016-02-26

560cfos.ca

Serious Crash in Clearview

Manny Paiva

- SC Rd 91 & Conc. 10

2016-02-25

Enterprise Bulletin*

Three people hurt after SUV and dump truck collide on County Road 91

Gisele Winton Sarvis

2016-02-22

Enterprise Bulletin*

Fight to keep County Rd. 91 open goes to Environmental Review Tribunal

Don Crosby

2015-12-08

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Clearview files challenge to Niagara Escarpment Commission decision on road work

Ian Adams

(.pdf)

2015-10-23

Simcoe.com / Wasaga Sun

Aggregate company ready to expand operations in Clearview Township

Ian Adams

 

Comment

Clearview Township transfers ownership of part of County Road 91 to Walkers Aggregate for $7 million. (source*)

 Or Walker simply gives $7.5 mln letter of credit to fulfill obligation to contribute to the cost of road improvements? (source)

 

Comment

Clearview Township assumes responsibility for part of County Road 91 with $2 million transfer from Simcoe County

Part of County Road 91 runs between two Walker aggregate quarry properties.

2015-07-20

Clearview Township

Notice of Road Closure – Duntroon Sideroad Road Reconstruction – Simcoe County Road 91

Steve Sage

- CR 91, CR 124 to Conc. 10 west of Duntroon

2014-08-19

Enterprise Bulletin*

Residents promise to continue fight against road closure

Don Crosby

2014-08-09

Greyhighlands.civicweb.net

Concerns with the closing of Simcoe Rd 91 (.pdf)

 

2014-08-03

TheFlesherton.ca*

County Road 91 Ends

 

2014-07-17

Creemore Echo

Quarry Money Goes Green

Kristi Green

2013-08-29

Toronto Star

Decision in Walker quarry case prompts worry about Niagara Escarpment

Rachel Mendleson

- Ruth Grier

2013-07-10

Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Divisional Court

Judicial Review Decision

Application dismissed; Joint Board made no legal error

2013-05-10

Enterprise Bulletin*

LTE: Walker v-p provides context

Letter to the Editor from

Ken Lucyshyn

2013-05-10

Toronto Star

Niagara Escarpment quarry fight before judicial review

Rachel Mendleson

2013-05-03

Creemore Echo

LTE: Walker expansion should be suspended

Letter to the Editor from

Donna Baylis

2013-04-26

Enterprise Bulletin*

NEC argues quarry doesn’t meet terms of escarpment plan

Emily Innes

2013-04-26

Simcoe County/Stayner Sun

Duntroon Quarry granted amendment

Michael Gennings

.5-1 year extension of existing operation (600,000 tonnes)

2013-04-18

Enterprise Bulletin*

MNR grants site plan change for Duntroon quarry

Emily Innes

2013-01-27

Facebook.com

“Handing Over” a County Road – Sound Familiar?

Chris Uli

2013-01-04

Enterprise Bulletin*

Top-10 stories of 2012: Duntroon quarry approved

 

2012-09-19

Bayshore Broadcasting

Quarry protest planned

Mariane McLeod

Walker’s workers protest at NEC

2012-08-22

Enterprise Bulletin*

Quarry decision produces winners and losers

Morgan Ian Adams

the site is habitat to the Bobolink and has a stand of Butternut trees and a colony of American Hart's Tongue Fern — all of which are endangered.

2012-06-30

Aggregates & Mining Today*

Board approves Duntroon quarry expansion

[see Barrie Advance?]

2012-06-18

Barrie Advance*

Board approves Duntroon quarry expansion

Michael Gennings

(alternate source)

2012-06-19

Barrie Examiner*

Enterprise Bulletin

OMB gives OK to Duntroon quarry expansion

Morgan Ian Adams

(alternate source)

2010-01-26

Simcoe.com / Barrie Advance

Walker, Clearview reach quarry settlement

 

2010

Environment News Service

Conservationists Fight Two Quarries Atop Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment

Walker Aggregates,

MAQ Aggregates (approved Aug-2012)


* defunct source so links may not work (retained for headline record) (more info)

 


For more information:

 

Walker’s Vice President:  Ken Lucyshyn

Walker Industries website:  http://www.walkerind.com/walker-aggregates/duntroon-expansion.html

 

 

 

 

“There are a lot of politicians past and present that take great pride in decades of work to protect this beautiful part of Ontario. Governments of all political stripes worked to create the NEP, with its unique set of policies and principles.  Never once did we think it would be overturned by two members of the Ontario Municipal Board.”  Ruth Grier, former Ontario Minister of the Environment (article)

 

 

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Disclaimer: This information has been compiled through private amateur research for the purpose of allowing the reader to make an informed and educated decision.  However, while the information is believed to be reliable, accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

 

 

 


APPENDICES

 

APPENDIX A

 

https://awareontario.nfshost.com/AWARE-Ontario/Issues/Aggregate_Walker%20Duntroon/Walker%20Duntroon.htm

 

 

APPENDIX B

 

 

Walker’s website as at 26-Apr-2013

 

Walker pits & quarries:

-         Anton Mills

-         Duntroon (quarry)

-         Osprey Quarry (west of Duntroon but not operational)

-         Severn Pines (quarry)

Plus two asphalt plants.

Walker Industries Holdings Ltd. Is based in Niagara and operates four quarries throughout the Niagara Peninsula in addition to the pits and quarries operated by Georgian in both Simcoe and Grey Counties.  The company was launched in 1875 by John Walker and enters its fifth generation as a family business. (report pg 4)

 

Waste Management project in Carmeuse Lime (article)

 

APPENDIX C

“The initial failure by Clearview Township to carry out the appropriate level of environmental assessment remains as a serious and major problem.”  George Powell, Blue Mountain Watershed Trust