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Former oil leak site set for development

A developer wants to turn an area that once had a 100-barrel-a-day oil leak into a subdivision. However, some Dickinson residents and area officials are concerned about building there.

During a Wednesday meeting at City Hall, Dickinson Planning and Zoning Commission members gave developer Mike Koch 30 days to address concerns they have about a pipeline that runs through his proposed Koch's Meadow Hills First Addition, (a 14-acre area near 10th Avenue West).

This is the second time concerns about the pipeline have been brought to light. Commissioners passed the preliminary plat at a January meeting advising the pipeline matter be looked into.

The commission found out at Wednesday's meeting that the pipeline has leaked and given the age of the pipeline, commissioners felt the possibility of another leak is very real, said Commissioner Jay Elkin, adding that he did not know when the leak occurred.

"The pipeline is a major concern, said Commission Chairman Earl Abrahamson. "It needs to be resolved because it affects people, property and my conscience. How can I go along with allowing residencies to be built there knowing there is a very real possibility of problems in the future?"

Some ideas the commission had for solutions to the concern were to replace the pipeline or move it, but they added Koch should discuss what other options may exist with the owners of the pipeline.

Koch stood up in frustration and said he felt there are adequate measures in place in the event of a leak.

"What am I supposed to do if the owners of the pipeline don't want to replace the pipeline?" Koch asked. "Is the whole development plan going to be denied? Can I skip over the area with the pipeline and develop areas north of there?"

The commissioners again advised Koch to talk with the pipeline owners and bring possible solutions or a new plan for the area back in 30 days.

The commission and one resident who lives near the area are also concerned. They felt having greenery added to eliminate eyesores would be a good idea.

In other business:

Charbonneau Car Center co-owner, Terry Dvorak once again asked the commission to consider a special use permit to allow a parking lot to be built in the area of 444 First St. W and 430 First St. W.

Dvorak said the parking lot would not be lighted, and fencing, trees, shrubs and a park bench matching the décor of surrounding homes would be added to make the parking lot look more appealing.

"I feel Charbonneau Car Center proves to be a good neighbor and steward of that area of Dickinson," City Engineer Shawn Soehren said. "The parking lot would be very positive and is much needed in that area of town."

The Commission approved the permit.

In other business Commissioner Jason Hanson said:

- The final plat of the LaMont addition near Sims Street and 14th Street West was approved.

- The final plat of land in between 23rd Avenue West and Interstate 94 business loop west running along Fourth Street West was approved.

- A special use permit for land lying between Fourth Avenue East and Custer Street to be used as a parking lot for St. Benedicts employees was approved. The area is to be lighted.

- A rezoning request to change an area of land near Angie Street from low density residential to general commercial was approved.

- The preliminary and final plat of land lying in the area of Highway 22, 29th St. E. and 40th St. W. was approved.

All requests now go to the City Commission Tuesday for final approval.