On Thursday, January 7th, SETF members and community residents braved the wintry weather to listen to a presentation by Al Meitl, manager of Asphalt Operating Services (AOS). AOS has plans to purchase 135 acres of the Wisconsin Steel site, located near 106th and Torrence Ave, with the intent to build a new liquid asphalt storage facility. This meeting was the first of several for the company to inform the community of the impact their facility will have. The 17 meeting attendees learned about how the AOS operations require barges to bring in raw materials and diesel trucks and rail for transporting final product to their customers. AOS claims that the increase in truck traffic along Torrence Ave would increase by upwards of 100 trucks/day, but that will not impact the service level of the road and will have minimal impact to current traffic patterns. Attendees raised concerns about the noise of the proposed operations, and we were informed that outside of the trucks and rail, the facility runs quiet. Odors may be a concern, however, and the company will be using a state of the art biofiltration system which efficiently converts sulfur containing compounds (those that create that hot-asphalt smell) into elemental sulfur that gets trapped in the filter.
If approved, AOS would like to start construction of the facility in early 2010 with the plant to begin operation by winter 2010 and be fully operational in early 2011. Mr. Meitl predicts the new facility will create 30-45 new jobs for the area.
A public meeting is scheduled for Monday, January 18, 2010 from 7 to 9 PM at St. Kevin Church, 10509 S. Torrence Ave. A special hotline has been created for those who have questions or concerns, and they can call 1-773-729-7545 for more information