Application for Rockton asphalt plant submitted once again

ROCKTON, Ill. (WIFR) -- The battle against an asphalt plant in Rockton has begun once again and neighbors are gearing up to put a stop to it.

"It's like here we go again,” said Shelly Gaudette.

Shelly Gaudette has lived next to the Rockton Quarry her whole life and has watched it evolve into an asphalt recycling center to possibly an asphalt plant.

“You get one thing settled, another one comes in and they just don't stop,” said Gaudette.

After withdrawing its petition a year ago, Northern Illinois Service Company has filed an application once again to build an asphalt plant at the quarry, something Gaudette and her neighbors don't want to see.

“We're going to at least go down with a fight because we definitely don't need it out here.”

According to the application, the plant would be on the floor of the quarry with part of it underground to help contain the sounds and smells it could emit, but some neighbors say the recycling plant that's there now is noisy and smelly.

“It's just the fact that it's not healthy, it's very loud,” said Gaudette.

Northern Illinois Service Company says newer asphalt plants are more environmentally friendly and will produce little emissions into the air, but for Gaudette her concern is a decrease in property value for her neighborhood.

“Who wants to live next to an asphalt plant with trucks going in and out and the smell and the noise 24/7? Nobody's going to want to,” said Gaudette.

The service company says the plant is necessary with the amount of road improvements our area needs.

“I don't have a problem with the plants; I have a problem with them being right here,” said Gaudette.

Northern Illinois Service Company says the plant will add high quality jobs, provide a cost savings for area projects and add revenue to the county. The Winnebago County Zoning Board of Appeals will hold a public hearing on April 17 to discuss the petition.