For months “concerned citizens” have brought claims of contamination and multiple violations against the permitted operations to mine sand and reclaim the site known as the “Triangle Mine”. Unfortunately, the false claims have had a negative impact on my business. Claimants have used social media, the Bainbridge Review and the Kitsap Sun to instill fear into the public to gain traction for their own agenda.
The triangle property has historically been used as a site to mine sand since the 1950s or earlier. The site has changed hands many times. The current owner, William Moore, has owned the property for 20-plus years. He has spent thousands of dollars cleaning up household trash, mattresses, clearing debris, dumped vehicles and much more.
In 2007, the city, and many residents viewed the permitted remediation operation as a “viable and desirable” solution. City personnel agreed that the result of a permitted mining site would provide a restored and useable property. This remediation would also end the illegal dumping.
Today’s operations can neither be seen nor heard by “concerned neighbors”. The property is surrounded by three arterial roadways. It is
separated by vegetated berms and tree cover. Claims that the area is a “residential neighborhood” are defied by the numerous nonresidential uses, including: light industrial properties; a facility with indoor and outdoor storage including boats, vehicles and RVs; a city fire station; American Legion Post 172; Hyla Middle School with ballfield; Bainbridge Disposal refuse facility, which operates with heavy truck traffic almost daily; PSE substation; a water well and tank operated by Washington Water Works; and a Buddhist Temple.
Last year there was a flurry of permitted activity at the site. Soil from the Blakely Elementary School Project as well as the Bainbridge Island High School Project was trucked onto the property, and trucks carried sand to both sites for fill material. This on-island resource proved to be a great benefit to the school district by means of an enormous cost savings. Trucking expenses for both projects were reduced by at least 50%.
In most cases, to prevent erosion and track out onto the city ROW, we elect to close the site in fall and winter. In 2020, we voluntarily ceased operations much earlier than in the past. I chose to do this to take voluntary soil samples for testing before bringing any additional soil onto the property. Due to COVID-19, our testing was delayed until Dec. 31 , 2020. A total of 10 samples from five locations at varying depths were collected. The samples were sent to On Site Environmental Inc. in Redmond for testing. A DNR representative accompanied us throughout the process. The test results confirm there is no contamination. For future soil imports, we have implemented a clean soil acceptance policy, on file with the city and DNR.
On Sept. 9, 2020 a drinking water sample was drawn from 6154 Lynwood Center Rd. The sample was provided to Spectra Laboratories in Poulsbo for testing. The results have come back reporting no contamination.
We understand how important the environment is and are very conscientious of that in our operations. It is important to add that Moore recognizes the importance of protecting the environment and is in full support of the ongoing operations on his property and looks forward to a fully restored and mitigated property in the future.
It is my sincere hope that government officials recognize our diligence and commitment to operate in a safe and responsible manner on the property until such time that a full remediation and restoration of the land is complete.
Shawn A. Liden