A downsized plan for a proposed quarry near Temecula won the approval of county planners.
Granite Construction, the company applying for mining permits, made two plans. One included a 155-acre quarry, and an alternative plan included a 135-acre one
County planners will recommend the smaller version during two upcoming planning commission meetings, according to county documents.
The meetings will be held at 4 p.m. at Rancho Community Church, 31300 Rancho Community Way in Temecula on April 26 and May 3.
County planners decided to endorse the smaller quarry reading a report on its impact on the environment, according to the documents. “The (report) deemed this alternative the environmentally superior alternative,” the report read.
The smaller quarry will produce 33 million tons, or 12 percent, less aggregate than the larger one, the report stated.
The acreage was trimmed from the northern and southern tips, nine acres from the north and 11 from the south. This will not change the size of Granite Construction’s project, which will spread out over 414 acres.
The project will border on Temecula to the north and west and San Diego County to the south.
The planning department praised the quarry in the report. “The project would bring many benefits to the county, the region and the community surrounding the site,” the report stated.
The quarry will give 99 people full-time jobs and $300 million in new sales tax revenue, said Karie Reuther, a spokesperson for Granite, in an emailed statement.
Opponents of the quarry argue it will kick silica particles into the air, which is known to cause various breathing ailments. The quarry will also worsen traffic around its freeway exit due to all the trucks coming and going.
The study on the quarry’s environmental impact took six years to complete and spans more than 8,500 pages.
“We are very happy the staff report acknowledges the projects benefits of reduced traffic, reduced air emissions, and the creation of new high quality jobs,” said Gary Johnson, aggregate resource manger for Granite, in an emailed statement.
To read the environmental impact report, click here.