The Project

About the Project

Summit is located along Highway 567 northeast of the Town of Cochrane (or legally defined as W 1/2 31-26-3 W5M) and is +/- 131 ha (+/- 323 ac). Mountain Ash Limited Partnership (MALP) intends to operate an aggregate operation within a portion of this land. The area surrounding the proposed project site includes an evolving mix of agricultural, farmsteads and business land uses such as natural resource industrial, oil and gas wells, and highway business development.

A Master Site Development Plan (MSDP) was submitted to Rocky View County in summer 2020. The MSDP complies with the relevant policies of the County Plan (Bylaw C-7280-2013) and includes a land use amendment to change the use of the land from agricultural to Direct Control (DC) to allow for an aggregate extraction. The draft bylaw received approval on March 2, 2021. A Development Permit application was also submitted for review and received approval on July 13, 2021.

MALP submitted a Code of Practice for Pits application as a next step in the process. A decision is expected in winter 2021-2022.

Site Development Plan

On-site operations planned for the project include stripping topsoil and overburden materials, mining the underlying sand and gravel, and eventual reclamation of disturbed areas.

A portable scale will be installed at the entrance to the site along Range Rd 40, south of the intersection with Highway 567. All sand and gravel will be excavated by a front-end loader and fed into a portable crushing and screening spread that will operate within the site as demand for gravel occurs. Aggregate product will be loaded onto trucks from the stockpiles to be conveyed through the scale house prior to being hauled to regional markets.

Aggregate products will be crushed, screened, and shipped to markets around Balzac, Calgary International Airport and north Calgary growth areas. Mountain Ash anticipates a 30 to 40-year operating period depending on market conditions. Development permit approvals will be required to support each phase of the proposed aggregate operations.

Mitigation Measures

Mountain Ash is committed to addressing potential impacts of the proposed Summit Project through appropriate & comprehensive mitigation measures.

Mountain Ash acknowledges that effective dust control measures is important to maintain air quality and is committed to maintaining air quality within and in vicinity of the MSDP area throughout the lifespan of aggregate operations. Mountain Ash will provide the County with an Air Quality Assessment and Dust Control Plan at the development permit stage in accordance with applicable policy.

Mountain Ash prepared an Air Quality Assessment to measure the anticipated emissions caused by the activities and operations of the proposed operation, including diesel combustion products such as sulphur dioxide (SO2), fine particulate matter, carbon monoxide (CO), oxides of nitrogen (NOx), and fugitive dust emissions from pit operations including total suspended particulates (TSP).

Dispersion modelling was also completed and results (at the project boundary) showed there were no predicted exceedances of the Alberta Ambient Air Quality Objectives (AAAQOs) for any modelled compounds and any averaging period. The predicted maximum concentrations at the sensitive receptors are all less than the AAAQOs. Expected TSP concentrations will likely be lower, as the residences are surrounded by partially wooded areas and bushes which trap dust.

Some operating best-practice options were applied to reduce dust (TSP) emissions: the application of Calcium Chloride (CaCl2) to unpaved roads for dust suppression, adding shrouds to conveyor drops and watering mine surfaces. To avoid TSP exceedances along the property boundary, crushers should be located at least 190 m from the east site boundary and 140 m from the other site boundaries.

The County does not have a standard method for conducting aggregate operation noise measurements, however, the County regulates noise nuisance through the Noise Control Bylaw (C-5772-2003) which states that no person shall “make, continue, cause, or allow to be made or continued any excessive, unnecessary, or unusual noise of any type” and that noise must be “minimized as much as practicable.” This Bylaw does not prescribe quantitative limits for noise emissions; therefore, Mountain Ash prepared an Acoustic Assessment to assess the potential sound generated from the proposed operation in relation to surrounding receptors. As shown here, sound monitoring was completed at three adjacent locations to provide a reliable representation of the existing acoustic environment and to determine the operational sound level at each noise sensitive receptor. Monitoring was completed over multiple days, including a weekend. The predominant sound source at each monitoring location was road traffic from Highway 567 and local residential sound, with occasional sound from the active Hillstone Aggregates operations, which were not dominant.The operational sound at the nearest noise sensitive receptors is expected to be below the criteria for all phases with mitigations and best practice employed. As required by the County’s Noise Control Bylaw, noise emissions would be minimized as much as possible. The results of this analysis indicate that noise generated within the MSDP area will be at or below 65 decibels, measured at the property line and at the nearest adjacent dwellings.

As shown In the phased mine plan map, a significant portion of the south western section of the MSDP area will not be disturbed and left in a natural state to respect the environmental integrity of the valley feature that traverses the site from northwest to southeast. Additionally, the existing wetlands situated within the northwest corner will be retained and are not expected to be disturbed.

Mountain Ash will implement appropriate erosion and sediment control techniques during operations and site reclamation activities. Detailed erosion and sediment control plans for each operational phase will be prepared in support of each development permit application.

Mountain Ash will inspect the MSDP area for noxious and restricted weeds as defined by the Weed Control Act and regulations and applicable Rocky View County Land Use Bylaw regulations. Herbicide may be applied to weeds as controlled under the Provincial Code of Practice for Pesticides and the Environmental Code of Practice for Pesticides. Mountain Ash will engage with the RVC Agricultural Fieldman on soil handling and weed control management techniques employed during operations.

Mountain Ash prepared a Visual Appraisal to assess the visual impacts the proposed operation will have on existing building sites within the vicinity of the subject lands as well as those that will pass by the site on Highway 567. The report indicates that, although the proposed development will disturb the site’s existing landform and vegetation, the overall visual impression provided from the perspective of the public driving through or passing by the site will remain mostly unchanged, given the phased development approach, installation of landscaped screening berms, and progressive reclamation activities proposed.

Get in Touch

Tige Brady
Project Manager


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