BNT fights quarry operation
A decision to allow a quarry operation near a Bermuda National Trust reserve will be appealed, the charity said yesterday.
A spokeswoman for the BNT said that the organisation had submitted an objection to the Development Applications Board over the plan for Judkin Lane in Hamilton Parish, which borders a Trust property and is near the Mangrove Lake nature reserve, but had been overruled. She added: “We do not believe that, given the scale of the development being sought and the very real potential for detrimental impacts in such a sensitive area, that the appropriate analysis was carried out, our objection given sufficient weight or representation to the DAB, and consequently we intend to appeal the decision.”
She said that the BNT owned the neighbouring property.
The spokeswoman added: “We also own Mangrove Lake to the south of the property, which is an extremely sensitive and ecologically important nature reserve.”
She said the proposed quarry was a “massive industrial process” and that it would use a driveway, which served as the sole access to two BNT residences.
The spokeswoman added: “The impact on the residents of these properties and their safety is of extreme concern to us.”
She said that the quarry would “undoubtedly adversely impact” residents in the area, as well and the surrounding sensitive lands.
The spokeswoman added: “Quarrying development is only permitted on properties that have a development zoning, which this lot does not have.”
She was speaking after the DAB last month gave planning permission limited to one year for quarrying at the Judkin Lane site.
The spokeswoman said that the charity had also objected to the application for a new house and apartment on the property.
The Bermuda Audubon Society and the Mid Ocean Club also objected to the house proposal. The planning application for the house construction is under review.
The quarrying application for the property, owned by Nelson Cordeiro, was made by quarry operator Shawn Perott.
Mr Cordeiro explained that the house construction would need a section of the hillside removed. He added that, rather than wasting stone from the site, it could be used to supply slate.
Mr Cordeiro said: “It’s very good stone.”
He denied the quarry operation would be a “massive industrial process” or that it would damage the surrounding area.
Mr Cordeiro said: “It’s not a large, industrial, prolonged thing. It’s within a year.”
Walter Roban, the Minister of Home Affairs, was asked about the claims by the BNT that the quarry would affect nearby residents and the property was not zoned for quarrying.
Mr Roban was also asked if there was a shortage of roof slate.
A spokeswoman for the ministry said: “As an appeal is to be lodged in this matter it would be injudicious to comment on this case.”
Mr Perott said last month that homes damaged by September’s Hurricane Humberto could wait months for repairs because of a slate shortage.
He estimated at the time that homeowners might have to wait between two and three months for slate.
A government representative last month confirmed that emergency permits for slate cutting had been approved.
A ministry spokeswoman said then that the Government was “aware of, and concerned about, the plight of homeowners who have lost roofs and suffered damages as a result of Hurricane Humberto”.
She added that the waiting time for slate supplies was up to two weeks.
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