County Highway

New salt barn comes with plenty more room

Montgomery County’s new salt barn can hold 2,900 tons of salt.
Montgomery County’s new salt barn can hold 2,900 tons of salt.
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Come this winter, let’s hope snow plow drivers won’t need as much salt as Montgomery County’s new salt barn can hold.

The county unveiled the newly-constructed facility on Thursday two months before the meteorological start of winter.

The $196,000 barn at the highway department has a 2,900-ton capacity, nearly 10 times larger than the decades-old, igloo-shaped structure that could hold just 300 tons of salt.

County engineer Jim Peck approached the Board of Commissioners last year about replacing the barn, which he said had sustained damage in recent years. The project was overseen by Minnesota-based Greystone Construction Co.

The highway department orders 1,500 tons of salt a year in advance but the limited space in the old barn came with additional costs.

“So if it was a mild winter and we didn’t use a lot of salt, the salt stayed up [at the vendor] and we paid storage fees,” said Jake Lough, county highway director.

During a salt shortage one snowy winter, the county had to borrow loads from the City of Crawfordsville and a private company.

Heading into this winter, Lough said he hasn’t heard any talk of a shortage.

“I think we’ll be sitting pretty good,” he said.

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