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LITH Endorses Plan for Plant; Cary Residents Don't Approve

Asphalt shingles would be pulverized and turned into road-paving material.

Members of the Lake in the Hills Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously endorsed a plan for an outdoor asphalt recycling business on the west side of town despite the objections from a handful of Cary residents.

The recycling facility would be located on about 19 acres west of Rte. 31, north Trinity Drive.

Richard Guerard, an attorney representing Bartlett-based Southwind RAS, said if plans are approved by the Village Board in January, about 10 trucks a day would drop off asphalt shingles, salvaged from single-family homes.

The operation would be open 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Shingles would not be stored on the site longer than 18 months.

The shingles would be ground into a black, sand-like substance and used as a road-pavement additive.

Any asbestos found on the site would be quarantined and sent to a landfill.

In a letter to the Lake in the Hills committee, Cary Mayor Tom Kierna said the asphalt shingles contain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, a byproduct of petroleum, which could get into the village of Cary’s water supply.

officials say the groundwater is just 30 feet below the surface and they worry about a nearby well at 600 N. Fox Trails Drive.

Gregory W. Wilcox, a consultant with Winston Engineering hired by Southwind to address environmental issues, said there would not be a problem with asphalt getting into the water supply. 

“Intuitively you think water will dissolve everything,” Wilcox said. “But asphalt does not dissolve like that or leach into the soil. If it did, then problems would be widespread. Everybody has asphalt shingles on top of their houses.”

Robin Engels, a resident of the Fox Trails subdivision in Cary, wasn’t buying it. She was one of a handful of Cary residents who voiced concerns over the asphalt recycling facility. 

“You need to hire experts that are not being paid by the guys that want to build this,” Engels told Lake in the Hills officials.

A village official said Lake in the Hills Trustees would discuss the petition at a committee meeting Jan. 10.

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