10/11/12 — Industry asks for zoning change

View Archive

Industry asks for zoning change

By Steve Herring
Published in News on October 11, 2012 1:46 PM

An industrial building closed since January 2008 could be on the verge of reopening, but with a new tenant and approximately 30 employees.

The Wayne County Planning Board Tuesday night recommended approval of a request by National Salvage & Service Corp. to rezone about 54 acres on the Old Mount Olive Highway just south of Goldsboro from light industry to heavy industry.

The site is the home of the former GAF plant, which produced shingles. GAF had operated the Goldsboro plant since 1998 when it purchased the assets from a competitor that was shutting down. It employed 108 people.

A public hearing will be required before any change can be made, and the final decision will be made by Wayne County commissioners.

"What they want to do is to begin taking in crossties, reprocess them, grind them up and sell the material as landscaping material," County Planner Connie Price said. "At the time it was built, I guess some 40 years ago, we did not have a heavy industry zone. We do now."

What is planned would not be appropriate for the light industry zone, he said.

"In general terms, light is for those industries where everything is confined inside a building, where it omits no odor, smoke or fumes, noise or vibrations that would harm residences or the area," Price said. "If you didn't know what was going on in the plant, you wouldn't know what was going on inside the plant."

Plans include improving the railroad siding and extending it in order to hold up to 30 railroad cars.

The ties would primarily be delivered by rail and the product shipped out by trucks.

Joanna Helms, Wayne County Development Alliance president, said the alliance's contact with the company had been third-hand.

The county has called company officials who have yet to respond.

However, it is still good news, she said.

Company officials could not be reached for comment prior to press time this morning.

National Salvage & Service Corp., based in Bloomington, Ind., began operation in 1980 as Midwest Railroad Tie Sales specializing in railroad track removal and recycling.

The company expanded in 1988 becoming National Salvage & Service Corp., the parent company, and National Environmental Services Corp. that performs demolition and environmental remediation.

It also has offices and grinding operations in Selma and Montgomery, Ala.

In other business Tuesday, the board voted to recommend a text change in the light industry zoning ordinance to allow cemeteries as a permitted use.

Price said his office had been contacted by Ronnie Matthews, who wants to use a one-half acre lot on Millers Chapel Road as a cemetery. The land is zoned light industry since it is located off the east end of the Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. That zone does not allow residences.

Wayne Memorial Park on U.S. 117 South also is in a light industry zone. However, the cemetery existed prior to the zoning. Making the text change would make the cemetery a conforming use in the zone, Price said.

It will be up to Matthews to obtain any necessary state permits, he said.

Price said he did not know if Matthews was interested in the lot as a family cemetery or if he planned to sell plots.

Since it is near the runway, the change would not allow for a chapel, Price said. A chapel could possibly be permitted in the county's other light industry areas that are not affected by the base's accident potential zone or noise levels, Price said.

Since it falls within those zones, the request also will be reviewed by the base engineer, he said.

The board approved a request by James Sasser to rezone property on Genoa Road from residential-agriculture 30 to village district. Property across Genoa Road and next to the Sasser property already are zoned village district.

Price said Sasser wants to open a used car lot on the property.

Also approved was an eight-lot subdivision plat for Countryside-South on Charlie Braswell Road in Fork Township. J.R. Ingram is the owner/developer.

The text change, rezoning and subdivision plat also have to be acted on by county commissioners. The text change and rezonings also require public hearings.