BREAKING: Cargill rail yard re-zoning approved by Cedar Rapids City Council - Protect the Prairie Park Corridor
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07 Apr BREAKING: Cargill rail yard re-zoning approved by Cedar Rapids City Council

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by Dallas WarrenTuesday, December 17th 2019AA

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — The Cedar Rapids City Council has approved a re-zoning for a controversial rail yard proposed by Cargill.

Tuesday night was the third and final reading of the ordinance, only council member Susie Weinacht opposed the plan.

30 people spoke at Tuesday night’s public comments section of the meeting. Of those, 12 people supported the re-zoning and 18 opposed it. That public discussion last for an hour and a half.

Cargill employees say this will help them become more efficient because they wouldn’t have to wait for other rail cars.

“If they gad come in early, I could load a few rail cars in my shift,” said one employee at the meeting. “If they were late, sometimes after 11 PM, I didn’t load any.”

The ordinance is highly controversial as several members of the prairie park community, where the rail yard will reside, are against it for several reasons.

“They’re going to be hearing this, seeing this, breathing this,” said one lady who is opposed to the plan. “There are kids who are going to be running around.”

The $6.5 million project will contain 200 rail cars. It’s leaving homeowners angered about the possible impact on their homes and land. Their concerns are some Cargill and city leaders believe they can mitigate.

“We will protect Prairie Fisheries and we’ll working to minimize the impact on those who live nearby,” said Mayor Brad Hart.

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