Zoning is the system of regulating the use of private land for the public benefit. Because industrial land uses have the greatest potential to impact public land, air and water resources, industrial zoning is often subject to critical regulatory review. Successful approval of new industrial land uses, therefore, requires balancing local economic development benefits with reasonable environmental protections. Here are three such industrial zoning cases handled for our clients:
Wolf Lake Terminals in Hammond was granted zoning approval to operate a new biodiesel production plant at its facility located in an I-2 manufacturing zoning district. Local economic development benefits included the multi-million dollar capital investment for the plant and new jobs. An environmental benefit of the plant was production of a clean-burning alternative fuel blend from soybean oil, a domestic renewable resource. Environmental impact concerns included air emissions, odors and groundwater protection. The Hammond Board of Zoning Appeals approved a conditional use permit for the plant. Approval criteria included proof of no danger to public health and safety and no adverse affect on the use and value of adjacent properties.
Consolidated Fabrication and Constructors, Inc. of Gary won zoning approval to operate a new oil storage tank manufacturing and fabrication facility in Tulsa, OK. The new facility was proposed in an I-2 general industrial zoning district. Local economic development benefits included the capital investment for the facility and new hourly wage jobs in the plant and new salaried positions in the business office. Environmental impact concerns included odors, dust and noise emissions. The County Board of Adjustment approved a special exception for the facility. Approval criteria included proof that the proposed use was in harmony with the county Comprehensive Plan and no adverse impact on adjacent properties.
ArcelorMittal was granted zoning approval to operate a solid waste landfill at its Burns Harbor steel mill. The landfill was proposed in an I-2 heavy industrial zoning district. The primary economic development benefit for ArcelorMittal was significant long-term reduction of solid waste management and disposal costs. Local environmental benefits included disposal of industrial solid wastes in a state-of-the-art Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) approved landfill and elimination of significant heavy truck traffic previously required to transport the wastes to off-site disposal facilities. Environmental concerns included ensuring that materials disposed in the landfill were non-hazardous wastes and groundwater protection. The Burns Harbor Board of Zoning Appeals approved a special exception allowing the landfill. Approval criteria included proof of no detriment to public health and safety and no interference with the general enjoyment of adjacent property.
Our Business Services Practice Group here at Burke Costanza & Cuppy offers a wide range of legal advice and services relating to real estate including development, financing, taxation, contracting and zoning regulation.