Thunder Bay

Plans for gravel pit near Hawkeye Lake draws opposition from nearby property owners

A proposed aggregate pit north of Thunder Bay is drawing opposition from area property owners.
About 100 people attended a public meeting about plans for a new gravel pit near Hawkeye Lake. (Supplied/Mary Anne Comuzzi)

A proposed aggregate pit north of Thunder Bay is drawing opposition from area property owners.

About 100 people showed up at a Wednesday night public meeting about plans for a gravel pit near Hawkeye Lake.

Mary Anne Comuzzi, who belongs to a Friends of Hawkeye Lake group, said the issue is bigger than just one lake.

"We started getting people involved and realized this is not just about Hawkeye Lake," Comuzzi said, pointing to Trout Lake, Surprise Lake, One Island Lake and Dog Lake as other nearby lakes that could also be affected. 

"There's such a large group of landowners in the Lappe area that are also affected by all of these submissions for gravel pit applications."

'Enough'

Comuzzi said it seems like each application is considered individually, rather than looking at the total number of pits.

"We have so many pits in our area. We're at the point, when is enough, enough?" Comuzzi said. "These pits are impacting our quality of life, our environment."

Comuzzi described her cottage has her "happy place" and personal "paradise," which could be impacted if the proponents of the pit are successful.

"A constant crusher going 24/7, 75 10-ton trucks on the road every day kicking up dust and the vibration, that is certainly going to impact our quality of life," Comuzzi said.

"The safety on our roads is going to be a huge issue. We have school buses on these roads, the route that they're looking at. The people who walk the roads with their animals, with their bikes, I said the safety issue is going to be horrendous out there. Our water quality, they're going to disturb our water quality."

Comuzzi said area water quality has been a particular concern, following the discovery of blue-green algae in Hawkeye and Surprise lakes this summer.

The deadline for public feedback to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is Nov. 16, which will be followed by a review period.

-With files from Jeff Walters

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