Former Quarries Transform Into Business Parks
Vulcan understands that mining is not a permanent use for land. After mining is complete, Vulcan reclaims the property for a variety of purposes, including natural restoration and economic development.
The Irwindale Business Center in Irwindale, California was a former quarry that is benefitting the City and community through a unique partnership.
When mining was completed there in the late 1960s, discussion turned to future uses. The City decided to fill the mining pit and transform the land into the Irwindale Business Center, which today provides thousands of jobs and generates revenue and economic activity benefiting Southern California communities.
During its transformation, Vulcan conceived a plan for the new development to fit with the physical landscape and specific characteristics of the growing city and helped design the site below the natural grade of the land.
“It would appear to be level so to any citizen driving in and out of this site, they’re totally unaware that they’re way down below grade at an old mining site,” said Vulcan Land Planning Engineer Jock Scott.
Irwindale Mayor Albert Ambriz believes developing the partnership with Vulcan and coordinating the project together resulted in the reclamation done the right way.
“The facility, the businesses here are very beautiful,” said Mayor Ambriz, noting that the City had long been known as jardín de roca, or the “Rock Garden.”
Irwindale is also home to Vulcan’s former Reliance II facility, which the City is turning into a site modeled after the success of the Irwindale Business Center.
“We’re looking at the Reliance II pit, and we’re really looking forward to that project and that’s the true partnership that we have with the company,” added Mayor Amrbiz.
Developers looking to partner with Vulcan already have their eye on the site due to the location, which is near existing expressways and offers easy access.
“Reliance II is really coming online at a very good time,” said Barbara Perrier, Vice-Chairman with CBRE. “It’s very unusual to find a 90-acre site in southern California, ready for development with freeway visibility and an easy on and off ramp…in a community that is encouraging businesses to come here.”
As Irwindale continues to grow, Mayor Ambriz recognizes that a thoughtful, responsible reclamation approach and vision is what attracts new opportunities.
“We take very serious the reclamation projects that we’ve had,” he noted. “Don’t stop and continue the partnership that we have with our Vulcan partners. A partnership that we’ve enjoyed for many, many years.”
“As a land company, I think our ultimate goal is to recycle the land that we use and touch,” said Larry Lao, Vulcan Project Manager for the Reliance II project. “You start mining, you produce concrete, rock and sand to build cities, freeways, houses and then 30 years, 40 years later on, you have a hole and the land becomes a landfill to continuously support the construction of the new cities.”
Left: Larry Lao, Reliance II Project Manager. Right: Jock Scott, Vulcan Land Planning Engineer.