The McDougal brothers, who have faced criticism over they years for their involvement in projects such as mining scenic Parvin Butte or trying to get a water right on the McKenzie River, are applying for a fill permit for “0.76 acres of emergent and scrub/shrub wetlands” near Green Hill Road in West Eugene.
(In a separate project, the McDougals are also currently planning a subdivision in Veneta, the R-G reports.)
According to the public notice from the Army Corps of Engineers the wetlands the McDougals seek to fill are “adjacent to Amazon Diversion Canal/Amazon Creek. ”
The project description, which you can read in full here, says the filling in of the wetlands is for a rail loading facility that would:
“… facilitate the development of the area as a rail loading facility. The rail siding would allow train cars to enter the Gregory Mill site and be loaded with timber products from both sides of the siding. The siding would enter the site from a switch on the CBR rail line (west switch). In order to provide workers with access, a road would be constructed parallel to the track. The applicant has stated that stormwater runoff from the site after construction could migrate to existing ditches but would be minimal since the gravel foundation of the rail siding would allow infiltration of stormwater. Project construction would result in approximately 6.3 acre of ground disturbance.”
The Army Corps, which is seeking public comment on the proposed filling of the wetlands, says the purpose of the project is to create a distribution hub for construction materials.
“The applicant has stated that the site is highly suitable as a distribution hub for construction materials due to its location immediately adjacent to the Port of Coos Bay Rail Link rail line. The proposed rail siding would allow train cars to enter the Gregory Mill site and be loaded with timber projects from both sides of the siding, for delivery to the Port of Coos Bay.”
To mitigate for the loss of 0.76 in wetlands, the McDougals are “proposing to purchase 0.76 credits from the City of Eugene’s Wetland Mitigation Bank.”
Comments on the project are due within 30 days, should reference US Army Corps of Engineers No: NWP-2013-141/1 and should go to:
Heidi Firstencel, Project Manager U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Eugene Field Office 211 E. 7th Avenue, Suite 105
Eugene, Oregon 97401-2722