The Noblesville Board of Zoning Appeals voted Monday night to approve a gravel pit project on the city’s south side that drew opposition from nearby residents.
The BZA voted 3-2 to approve a zoning variance that will allow Noblesville-based Beaver Materials to dig a pit and extract sand, gravel and minerals on about 68 acres of farmland.
The property is northwest of the intersection of Cherry Tree Road and North 161st Street. It is north and west of the Cherry Tree Meadows subdivision, east of homes on properties varying from one to 10 acres, south of Spencer Farm and west of Hoosier Futbol Club.
A statement from the city said the proposal will not go before the Noblesville Plan Commission or City Council because it was a land-use variance. The BZA’s decision can be appealed to Hamilton Superior Court.
“The approved land use variance includes several conditions that have to be followed during excavation and transporting activities on the site, including a prohibition on blasting or the use of explosives, site watering to limit dust pollution, and timing limitations,” the city’s statement said.
The land use variance would allow Beaver to work at the excavation site and haul materials in trucks for 10 years. The facility would operate from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 7 a.m. to noon on Saturdays, according to documents filed with the city.
In August, a group of residents crafted a petition expressing their concerns about the project that included its potential impacts on property values, traffic, roads, drinking water, pollution, wildlife and noise. They also feared Beaver’s gravel pit proposal would encourage other companies to do work near neighborhoods.
The project was the second gravel pit plan proposed by Beaver to draw opposition since last year.
In June 2022, the Noblesville City Council voted to reject Beaver’s plan to dig a 50-acre gravel pit next to Potter’s Bridge Park near Allisonville Road and Cumberland Road.
Beaver previously withdrew a plan in 2020 to dig a gravel pit next to Potter’s Bridge Park following intense community pushback.