Pratt County Commissioners unanimously approved a recommendation made by the Pratt County Planning and Zoning Board that a special use permit be granted to construct a new elevator near Preston.

The Pratt County Zoning Board held a hearing on June 17 on a request from Cairo Cooperative Equity Exchange, Cunningham, for a special use permit to erect an elevator complex next to the city of Preston on a 156-acre site in an A-1 Agricultural District.

The residential area of the city of Preston is adjacent to the south side of the proposed project area with some agricultural land located to the south as well.

Cairo Cooperative Exchange asked to construct a new grain elevator consisting of four 100,000-bushel bins approximately 100 to 115-feet tall. The leg of the elevator will be approximately 140-feet high. The purpose of the construction is to replace an existing elevator located on the southwest side of Preston that has been condemned and is no longer in use.

The anticipated cost of the new construction will be at, or over, $2 million, according to Kent Domsche, general manager of the Cairo Cooperative Exchange. He noted that at this time they expect to have the facility in operation by the next wheat harvest season.

Commissioners approved the recommendation of the Pratt County Planning and Zoning Board, including the 13 conditions the co-op must meet, which are as follows:

1. Applicant shall submit a site plan for approval identifying at a minimum: the location of storage bins, scales, water runoff direction, entrances and exits, additional structures, location of lighting and any other special features that are specific to this type of operation.

2. Applicant will obtain all appropriate water and sanitation permits if own wells and septic system is required. If site is connected to municipal water and sewer, a letter from the local municipality will suffice to ensure proper water and sanitation procedures are met.

3. Lighting will be adjusted away from local residences as much as possible.

4. Future structures shall obtain approval through the Pratt County Zoning office prior to construction.

5. Future storage of hazardous materials will be require approval of the Pratt County Zoning office prior to construction, or movement to site.

6. Applicant will coordinate with county road supervisor to ensure entrances and exits meet local requirements.

7. Prior to obtaining a zoning permit, applicants shall submit a road access and maintenance agreement with the county road supervisor to ensure access roads can handle the additional traffic and weights.

8. Exhaust and ventilation systems shall meet all requirements of the state and federal codes, including hours of operation and noise.

9. Construction and operation of the facility shall meet all local, state and federal guidelines.

10. The project site must be kept neat, clean and mowed. The site shall be maintained in a nuisance free condition. The owner shall be held solely responsible for the control of dust, odors, fire, vermin, insects, rodents, filth, groundwater and surface water contamination and windblown materials resulting from past and future operations on this site.

11. Implementation of dust and noise control measures shall occur at all times on site.

12. All signs must meet the requirements as set forth in the Zoning Regulations of Pratt County.