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Tenn. recycler seeks new site for business

Keywords: Tags  scrap yard, metal recycling, Kan Metal Recycling, Taqi Mirza, zoning, relocation, Chattanooga, Lisa Gordon

PITTSBURGH — A Tennessee metal recycler struggling to keep his business operating has failed to win support to operate at a new site.

The Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Agency (RPA) is recommending that Taqi Mirza not be issued a special permit to operate a metal recycling yard on a 3.02-acre site in Chattanooga because it is too close to the city’s ballpark.

Mirza, who runs Kan Metal Recycling, was told in January that he was illegally operating at a 4.39-acre site that he opened without seeking the proper zoning (, Jan. 10). Mirza applied to have the parcel rezoned but was denied because a county planning commission believed it would create a wave of similar requests from adjacent properties. Mirza left the property and moved to the new location.

The RPA said that indoor scrap metal recycling facilities are a permitted use at the 3.02-acre parcel, but the applicant planned to install a scale house and truck scale, and scrap vehicles and operate outdoors.

The outdoor facility would not be a good fit because it is near Finley Stadium, an outdoor market, a dog park and a skate park, according to the staff analysis.

Mirza told AMM that he was aware of the pending denial and he planned to bring legal counsel to an April 8 hearing on the matter. "I don’t see any reason why I should be denied. The scrap guy literally right next door to me does the same thing I am going to do," he said.

Mirza said that in a worst-case scenario he has found a third location for which he could seek approval to operate.

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