Proposal for Upper York County Indoor Firing Range to Go Before Planning Commission

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The firing range is proposed to go behind Bennett Creek's Nursery on Penniman Road. It is surrounded by a truck service area and warehouses. (Marie Albiges/WYDaily)
The firing range is proposed to go behind Bennett Creek’s Nursery on Penniman Road. It is surrounded by a truck service area and warehouses. (Marie Albiges/WYDaily)

A 30-lane pistol and rifle indoor firing range may soon be coming to Upper York County.

Tentatively called “Independence Indoor Firing Range,” it is proposed to be located at 1558 Penniman Road behind Bennett’s Creek Nursery and near the future homes of Whittaker’s Mill residents.

The Digges Company, which is listed as the applicant for the special-use permit, owns the property at 1558 Penniman Road, where a wood recycling plant is also proposed to be built.

A special-use permit, which entails two public hearings and final approval by the York County Board of Supervisors, is required for both the firing range and the recycling plant because of county zoning regulations.

The 18,100-square-foot firing range would be built in two phases, according to a memorandum by York County Senior Planner Earl Anderson. One phase would consist of 15 pistol-length range lanes and support facilities that include bathrooms, a classroom area and a lunch room. The other phase would consist of 15 rifle-range lanes as well as areas for retail, firearm rentals and firearm repairs. The applicant has not said which phase would be taken on first.

Mark Renaldi, who serves as vice president of development for the Busch Companies and is handling both applications, said preliminary discussions are being held with local law enforcement and military personnel who have an interest in using the facility for weapons training.

Currently, the closest indoor firing range facilities are located in Newport News and Richmond.

The other application submitted by the Digges Company is for a recycling plant that would grind wood primarily taken from commercial land clearings into mulch, which would then be sold.

Mulch production and sales would take place between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays, according to the memorandum. There would also be a place for equipment and storage.

Planning staff has recommended the Planning Commission move both applications forward to the Board of Supervisors with a stamp of approval.

The Planning Commission will review both applications at its meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday in York Hall.