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Mineral Lands in the City of Dallas


Mineral Lands in the City of Dallas, by A. E. St. Clair. 14 p., 15 figs., 3 tables, 1 plate, 1978. ISSN: 0082-3309. Print Version.

For a downloadable, digital version: GC7801D.

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GC7801. Mineral Lands in the City of Dallas, by A. E. St. Clair. 14 p., 15 figs., 3 tables, 1 plate, 1978. ISSN: 0082-3309. Print.

To purchase this publication as a downloadable PDF, please order GC7801D.

Surface mining, with its accompanying dust, noise, truck traffic, and land disruption, generally conflicts with most urban land uses. Urban development, however, is dependent upon the availability of nearby mineral resources for the construction of roads and buildings. As a result of this conflict, many urban areas are now faced with rapidly rising construction costs, partly because of a failure to recognize and use aggregate resources before building over such resources or making them unavailable by zoning.


Applying the concept of sequential land use to the problem of mining in urban areas can help prevent loss of resources by encouraging exploitation of minerals before development of the land. Mining can therefore be considered an interim land use, after which the land can be reclaimed for recreational, residential, or commercial uses.


The first step in implementing this reclamation policy is to locate areas with resource potential, as well as areas from which minerals have already been extracted. After the resources have been identified, decisions that affect use of these areas can be made with consideration of the mineral potential of the land. Comparing the advantages of sequential land use of mineral areas with the advantages of the other alternatives, such as urbanization or zoning to prevent mining, first requires information on the availability and the location of potential resources with respect to the urban area. Such a comparison also requires data on the types and effects of mining, requirements and costs of reclamation, and projected demand for resources. Considering all these factors promotes informed land use decisions and prevents both unnecessary loss of resources and increases in construction costs.


In 1976, the City of Dallas contracted with the Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin, to study mineral lands within the City of Dallas. The purpose of the project was to delineate mineral lands, to describe alternatives for reclaiming mined land, and to evaluate the economic impact of zoning mineral lands. This study was designed to provide basic data for policies to ensure availability of mineral resources, and to promote the use of these resources with minimal long term environmental disruption.

Keywords: mineral lands, minerals, surface mining, urban geology, Dallas, Texas

St. Clair, A. E., 1978, Mineral Lands in the City of Dallas: The University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology, Geological Circular 78-1, 14 p.

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