Bell Road mine has historically and continues to produce aggregate material. Over the last two years, the Planning team at MDA have been working closely with the owner to address inconsistencies in the existing permit conditions.
In late 2019, the Planning team provided Expert Witness testimony on behalf of the Bell Road Mine to support Lee County’s Comprehensive Plan Amendments eliminating Map 14: Limerock Mining Overlay. The Bell Road Mine had be inadvertently omitted from the Map when established in 2010. Additionally, due to the ongoing mining and residential development that has occurring in Southeast Lee in recent years, the Overlay was deemed no longer necessary. In September of 2020 a Final Recommended Order by the Department of Opportunity was issued determining Lee County’s Amendments to eliminate Map 14 were in compliance with Florida Statutes.
Once the issues to Map 14 were address by the County’s comprehensive plan amendment, the Planning team began working with Bell Road Mine to prepare and submit permit applications that would amend its existing Industrial Planned Development zoning to acquire a one-time, 5-year extension, plus amend the conditions of approval from its 2004 IPD zoning, which details what it can do with the limerock dug from the 40-foot-deep mine pit.
In September of 2020, the Lee County Commissioners unanimously approved the time extension and Condition modification for the Bell Road Mine on State Road 82. This will allow the mine owners to source and sell much-needed limerock throughout the Lee County and if needed, the region, as population continues to increase and growth continues.
As part of this zoning action, the county also found that Bell Road Mine’s previously approved rezoning applications were found to be compatible with surrounding property owners, the environment, and in compliance with the Lee Plan.