Starke County Forest Access Road Plan Needs Another Level of Approval


Plans for the Starke County Forest’s new access road still have another hurdle to clear before construction may begin. The Starke County Park Board recently got $15,000 from the Hardesty Memorial Endowment Fund to turn the forest’s existing access trail into a gravel road and add a parking lot.

During last week’s park board meeting, it was reported that Bob Aloi with Territorial Engineering has drawn up the plans. Now, they have to be approved by the county’s zoning board, according to County Attorney Marty Lucas. “The road’s narrower than the standard road for Starke County,” he explained, “and that’s okay because there’s no houses on it or anything, anyway. But because of that, it does require the zoning board to approve that change from what the normal minimum standard road is.”

That’s expected to occur when the Starke County Planning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals meet on Wednesday. In the meantime, the park board has decided to approve the plan on a preliminary basis, to allow construction to start as soon as the proper zoning permission is granted. The Starke County Commissioners have already agreed to let the County Highway Department do the construction work.