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Local excavation company hoping to put gravel pit near Idaho Falls golf course

Idaho Falls

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The image above is a stock photo and is not the gravel pit mentioned in the story below.

IDAHO FALLS — A development project near Sandcreek Golf Course on the south side of Idaho Falls is a source of curiosity for many people in the area.

Public records obtained from Bonneville County Planning and Zoning indicate Double L Enterprises, LLC, a land excavation company, is trying to put a gravel pit on the east side of 25th East between 65th South and 81st North, which is about a mile south of the golf course. The plan for the gravel pit is in phases, with the first phase covering 20 acres on a 75-acre parcel owned by Verle and Kelly Landon.

Paul Snarr with Eagle Rock Engineering is working with the property owners on the application and approval process. He tells the purpose of the gravel pit is to accommodate growth and pending development projects nearby.

“You have to have a gravel pit to do any road construction. You’ve got to have gravel for different things like footings for homes or numerous construction projects,” Snarr says. “You see a lot of subdivisions going in in this area and … (having) a gravel source close by will help with future developments and some of the developments going on.”

One of those development projects is the Granite Creek subdivision being built across the street from the golf course. Another subdivision is in the works adjacent to Landon’s property.

This image shows the property where the gravel pit would be installed. | Courtesy Michelle Hagen

Bonneville County Planning and Zoning approved the installation of the gravel pit during a public hearing last month. An appeal of P&Z’s decision was recently submitted, with some citing concerns for potential traffic safety hazards.

“Note how many accidents have occurred in this area, including the very tragic deaths of three people just a few months ago at the intersection of Township and Holmes (just a little northwest of this site),” one resident wrote to the county. “Please reconsider approval of this gravel pit.”

“I see one or more crashes at the intersection of 65th and South 25th East every time it snows. Trucks regularly using this road will make it much worse and more deadly,” another homeowner wrote.

Snarr says having a gravel pit close by is much safer than having trucks haul it in from farther away.

“It’ll be 2,000 feet away (from the road) starting out,” he says. “It’ll have a berm and there’ll be trees around it. I don’t think people will really notice it.”

The property is currently being used as farmland and some have suggested putting a gravel pit at this location will destroy it.

“That 20 acres (where the gravel pit will be) is phase one of the project, which will last 20 or 30 years. So they’re going to continue to farm the remaining 55 acres (for a long time),” says Snarr. “Whether it’s farming or gravel, you’re really not going to notice a lot of difference.”

Snarr says people often assume the worst when it comes to gravel pits. Many subdivisions have been built right next to one, he says, and historically they haven’t caused any problems for developers or property owners.

A public hearing regarding the appeal will be held Monday, Jan. 25 at 2:30 p.m. Michelle Hagen, an assistant planner with planning and zoning, says a final decision will likely happen at a separate meeting yet to be determined.