Epping asphalt plant rejected

Epping Planning Board member Mike Yergeau shares his concern about a proposed asphalt plant at Thursday night’s board meeting before the plan was rejected.

EPPING — After a 10-minute discussion, the planning board voted unanimously Thursday night to deny a company’s proposal to build an asphalt plant on Shirking Road.

“I think that it does not meet all of the requirements of our zoning ordinance,” said Joseph Foley, the board’s chairman.

Board members echoed many of the concerns raised by Epping and Fremont residents who worried about odor from the asphalt, heavy truck traffic, and noise.

Sam Patterson Real Estate Development LLC proposed the asphalt plant on property at 30 Shirking Road adjacent to its New England Paving facility.

The company hoped to make asphalt and recycle old asphalt in batches that would be used mostly by New England Paving.

Company officials declined to comment on the board’s decision and what their next steps might be.

Foley listed several reasons why he felt the project didn’t meet the town’s zoning regulations.

Board member Susan McGeough agreed that the plan shouldn’t move forward, saying the “noxious” smell from the asphalt production would be a constant problem.

“My biggest thing is going to be the roads,” said board member Dave Reinhold, who is also the town’s road agent.

The project was declared to have a regional impact.

Many residents from the neighboring town of Fremont turned out for a public hearing last month to share their concerns about the project and its potential impact.

The Rockingham Planning Commission had also sent a letter to the planning board saying its Development of Regional Impact Committee determined that the project could potentially have road, odor and noise impacts and is located within the wellhead protection areas for wells used for the town’s water supply.