Code Enforcement Officer Kim Keene answers a question at the Mount Desert Planning Board meeting Monday evening, which was held in the front parking lot at MDI High School. ISLANDER PHOTO BY DICK BROOM

Road issue delays quarry decision

MOUNT DESERT — The saga of the quarry license application continues. 

It had been expected that on Monday, nearly seven years after Harold MacQuinn, Inc. applied for a license to resume quarrying at a site in the village of Hall Quarry, the Planning Board would make a decision. But that didn’t happen. 

The quarry is located at the end of dirt lane off Crane Road. A question of whether that road meets the town’s road standards arose at Monday’s meeting.  

“In particular, there was a right-of-way width issue,” said Planning Board Chairman Bill Hanley. 

“We asked the applicant to give us more information about the road. They’ve got to survey it and really detail what the existing conditions are. And we asked that they show its compliance to the road and drive standards in the LUZO [Land Use Zoning Ordinance] and also the subdivision ordinance.” 

Hanley said that if Crane Road is not in compliance, the applicant is expected to ask for a waiver of the road standards. 

“But there is no guarantee they would get their waiver, as the board is inclined to look for compliance,” he said. 

Many residents of Hall Quarry, especially those who live closest to the quarry, have been fighting MacQuinn’s application for a quarrying license ever since it was filed in 2014. They claim that an active quarry is out of character with a residential area and that the noise generated by the cutting and removal of granite decreases both their quality of life and their property values. 

In June 2017, the Planning Board ruled 4-1 that MacQuinn was not eligible to apply for a quarrying license. The majority of board members said the Hall Quarry site had been dormant for so long that it did not qualify for grandfathering under the LUZO. 

MacQuinn and Freshwater Stone, which leases the quarry, appealed that decision to the town’s Board of Appeals, which upheld the Planning Board’s decision. But in October 2018, a judge overturned that ruling and the Planning Board resumed its consideration of the quarrying license application a few months later. 

Hanley said the Planning Board would schedule the next meeting on the quarry application once the applicant has provided the requested information about Crane Road. 

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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