MIDLOTHIAN — Public safety is the reason behind a petition submitted by Martin Marietta for the voluntary annexation of 3,089.29 acres in Midlothian. The Midlothian City Council discussed the request during two public hearings at its Tuesday night meeting.

“The reason why we are considering this is Martin Marietta has the right to quarry the area right up next to the houses in the Spring Brook addition. They would be crossing Tower Road and Water Works Road to get there,” Midlothian City Manager Chris Dick said. “We felt like the safety of the public and for efficient mining operations that we would relocate the road up closer to the Spring Brook addition. The main reason for this was a safety concern with heavy equipment crossing Tower and Water Works Roads continually.”

Dick stated that Martin Marietta has the legal right to mine up to about 100 feet to some of the homes located in the area.

According to Martin Marietta’s website, it is a leading supplier of aggregates and heavy building materials with operations spanning 26 states, Canada, the Bahamas and Caribbean islands. The company supplies the resources for roads, sidewalks, and building foundations. A Dallas Morning News article indicated that in 2014 Martin Marietta merged with Texas Industries, Inc. The facilities the company has in Midlothian are located at 610 Eastgate Road, 3030 U.S. Highway 67 and 245 Ward Road.

Midlothian Assistant City Manager Kristine Day said the land planned for annexation is in the southwest quadrant of the community. She noted that the city has been working with the company for the past year on the agreement. The deal will cause Martin Marietta to move Tower Road from its current location to improve safety.

Residents expressed their concerns about the quarrying operations taking place near their homes.

“Our home is on Beaver Creek. They don’t have the right for their noise to intrude on my home life. That is where I am concerned. They run 24 hours a day. We hear click-clack and beep-beep. We can’t live with that,” Judith Yarbrough said. “People are talking about selling their homes. One person has already sold and another one is for sale. The issue is not the quarry, but it is the noise. People on each side of us are retired. When we bought our home in 1993, the plat said it was a quarry buffer.”

Yarbrough stated that the 12-foot berm that Martin Marietta is going to be built on the site is not enough to deflect the sound made from its operations.

Martin Marietta representative, Amanda Miller, followed Yarbrough to address some of the concerns that residents have about the mining operation.

“I know there has been a great deal of planning that has gone into this. One of the reasons that we decided to do this was out of safety. We want a safe and sustainable way to go forward with our mining plan with the community and the neighbors in mind. That is one of the reasons we have gone to great lengths to plan this annexation agreement out,” Miller explained. “One of the things that I want to pledge to you guys (the council) and to the neighbors is that we would like to meet with any of the community members that are interested to hear the concerns and look for feasible solutions. We have a quarry in the middle of San Antonio that has had residential development grown up around it. So we are aware of concerns like this from other communities.”

Miller added that Martin Marietta wants to find solutions and make the quarry something that people can be proud to have it in their community.

The voluntary annexation agreement will be brought back to the council for consideration for adoption at its Oct. 24 meeting.

In other business the council:

• Presented a proclamation in recognition of National Night Out.

• Approved a resolution for the use of a temporary concrete batch plant for Dove Creek phase one.

• Approved a resolution authorizing the annual Midlothian downtown trick-or-treat event that is hosted by the Midlothian downtown business association and the city set for Oct. 31.

• Approved an interlocal cooperative purchasing agreement with Ellis County.

• Approved a specific use permit for a secondary dwelling to be located at 2211 Somerfield Dr.

• Approved an ordinance rezoning approximately 300 acres of planned development district 48 located on Farm-to-Market Road 1387 immediately west of Heritage High School to a planned development district with single-family residential, general professional, community retail and light industrial uses.

• Approved the rejection of bids received on Aug. 17 for public works water and sewer maintenance supplies.

• Approved a second amendment to the 1991 Tarrant Regional Water District and Trinity River Authority of Texas Raw Water Supply Contract and the 1991 TRA – Ellis County regional water supply contract between the city and TRWD and TRA.

• Approved a fourth amendment to the raw water supply contract between the city and TRA.

• Approved a contract with Evqua Water Technologies for the purchase of sodium chlorite for the generation of chlorine dioxide used in the treatment process for water treatment plant’s one and two.

• Approved the utilization on an interlocal cooperative purchasing agreement with the City of Baytown to secure a contract with DataProse for processing the city’s monthly utility bills.

• Approved a resolution amending the master fee schedule previously approved and was effective Sept. 1.

• Approved modifying the billing of the EMS service agreement by Intermediz for Emergency services District residents.

• Approved an ordinance-amending chapter 12 of the code of ordinances related to traffic and vehicles. This amendment repeals provisions relating to the use of a portable wireless communications device by the operator of a motor vehicle to read, write, or send an electronic message due to the preemption by House Bill 62 that was effective Sept. 1.

Follow Andrew on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AndrewBrancaWDL or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/AndrewBrancaWNI. Contact him at abranca@waxahachietx.com or 469-517-1451.