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Proposal to move asphalt plant from Timnath to Wellington met with resistance

Connell Resources says the land it has proposed to move an asphalt plant to is zoned appropriately, while neighbors say it's too close for comfort.
Posted at 9:53 PM, Apr 28, 2023

UPDATE | June 5, 2023 — The Wellington Planning Commission approved the site plan with a 6-1 vote on Monday. You can watch the full meeting here.


WELLINGTON, Colo. — Not too far from Wellington Community Park in the Buffalo Creek Neighborhood is a big field that's sitting empty — for now.

"We're moving an existing facility from Timnath, where we've operated for over 30 years, to Wellington," said John Warren, president of Connell Resources, of their current asphalt plant that is nearing the end of its gravel pit. "When we identified [the new proposed location], it's been zoned Heavy Industrial for 23 years."

The proposed site is at the corner of Larimer County Road 66 and the BNSF Railroad. The site is 35.56 acres, the footprint of which would be similar to the Timnath plant, except a variance has been applied to allow a silo height of 70 feet and there would be no gravel pit.

"You won't see a large hole in the ground and a lot less equipment. All the material will be hauled in versus being produced on site. So in Timnath, we have rock crushers that we actually produce the material on site. [In Wellington] we'll be hauling it all in," Warren said.

The current plan has the material storage positioned 800 feet from a nearby proposed subdivision and has the actual asphalt mixing plant 2,800 feet from the Buffalo Creek Neighborhood.


"That's the minimum to try and be safe. So if we want to meet the minimum for my child, then I guess we can look at that. But it's not what I want," said Ben Leistikow, a homeowner who is speaking out against the plant proposal.

He and other neighbors say they were shocked to find out that an asphalt plant would be proposed close to their homes.

"It's very windy in Wellington. This is very common year round," said Matt Goepel, another neighbor opposing the proposal. "If the wind blows west, you know it really, it will just go all over the town. It's just going to cover the park, our neighborhood. There's, Eyestone Elementary is directly down here."

Warren said according to Federal Clean Air Standards, Connell Resources is a "minor source emitter."

"Which means we don't produce a lot of emissions, but we do produce emissions. So therefore, we're regulated by the Colorado Department of Public Health. Our asphalt plant operates under no less than four environmental permits at a time," Warren said.

He added that studies examining the potential noise and air quality of the proposed plant are ongoing, and the results should be ready by June.

Some families say even if there are minor emissions, it's too close for comfort.

"We need asphalt, we're using it every day, but let's think about where we're putting it," said Leistikow.

"There's no reason for them to build an asphalt plant so close to a community park, so close to a residential area. There's many other areas within unincorporated Larimer County that could be developed," said Goepel.

The final decision will come down to officials with the Town of Wellington. The planning commission will be discussing it at their next meeting on May 1 at 6:30 p.m.

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