Published on March 23, 2022 at 1:47 p.m.
A waste tire processing plant is proposed in a former manufacturing company in Bowmanstown.
Last week, the Carbon County Planning Commission reviewed technical documents for an application to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection that Gabriel Rubber LLC and Civil & Environmental Consultants Inc. submitted for the proposed facility. . No formal action was taken at the time.
The plant, if approved, would be located just off Route 248 at 700 Lehigh Street in the former Prince Manufacturing plant. The facility would utilize three existing buildings on the 5-acre site. The site has been used for plastic recycling, hot air balloon guiding, and a welding and body shop.
The DEP plans to conduct the technical review before taking any final action.
Depending on demand, the company plans to convert old tires into a commodity by shredding them into three different sizes, which could be used as an alternative fuel in a cement plant or power plant, playground mulch or rubber powder. that can be mixed with asphalt or used to make new tires.
This would create between 20 and 30 jobs.
The project has already been approved by the Borough’s Zoning Hearing Board in November 2020 with the terms that a separate permit would be required for any renovations and commercial occupancy prior to the start of operations; as well as several other conditions concerning the operations.
Prior to the approval, Jacques Torkieh, managing director and president of Gabriel Rubber LLC, said there would be three to five deliveries a day of truckloads of tractor-trailer tires. These deliveries would use national roads and not district streets.
He also testified that during the shredding process, no heat would be used, meaning no smell, dust or smoke would be produced.
Torkieh already operates a facility like this in New Jersey.
Residents at the time voiced their objections to the proposed plans, citing concerns about noise, dust, excessive traffic, and shredded tire byproducts that could become problems.
A local firefighter also explained how difficult a shredded tire fire would be to put out if it occurred, citing that it would take about 1,000 gallons of water per minute for at least three hours.
A proposed tire processing plant could be launched at the former Prince Manufacturing site in Bowmanstown. The facility, Gabriel Rubber LLC, would use three buildings on this site. AMY MILLER/TIMES NEWS