By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

Following the path of least resistance, Del Norte Countys future transfer station appears to be headed for the Hooshnam site on Elk Valley Road.

After reviewing comments to the draft environmental impact report (EIR) on three locations considered as a possible home for the transfer station, the consulting firm of Winzler and Kelly has essentially ruled out two former preferred locations: Hambro and the county landfill. This leaves Hooshnam as the only studied site.

The Hambro site is effectively dead, said senior project manager Steve Salzman in a report to the Del Norte County Solid Waste Management Authority dated Dec. 10.

Trying to make the landfill site work will be a long, uphill, and probably futile battle, Salzman said, citing sensitive environmental concerns in the area as too great an obstacle to overcome. ... We recommend that the Hooshnam site be the focus of the final EIR and that no additional studies be prepared for any other sites.

The transfer station, which will sort outgoing county garbage and send it to distant landfills after the county landfill closes, has been the focus of much debate between citizens who live near the proposed locations.

The Hambro site sits adjacent to Hambro Forest Products on Elk Valley Road and was the first preferred location. But the lot size was later deemed too small and the preferred location moved to the county landfill. Environmental concerns have now made that location a long-shot, according to Director Kevin Hendrick.

The Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority meets this morning at 8:30 in the Supervisors Chambers of the Flynn Building at 981 H St.