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Young farmer gets approval to build hog barn

WORTHINGTON — With the support of neighboring farmers, a young Rushmore man working into his family’s farming operation was granted permission Wednesday to construct a hog barn in the southwest quarter of Section 29, Summit Lake Township.

Adam Aggen appeared before the Nobles County Board of Adjustment to request variances from the county’s setback rules to construct a confinement building. County ordinance requires 1,980 feet of separation from a neighboring residence, but Aggen’s proposed site is 1,855 feet away from neighbor Mark Slater and just 1,100 feet away from Bruce Aggen’s residence.

Both farmers said they supported Adam Aggen’s plan and would be OK with a second barn being constructed in the future, if the young farmer wanted to expand.

Aggen’s plans include construction of a 192- by 102-foot total confinement barn to house 2,400 head of swine. Due to a waterway coursing through the parcel — and areas with hilly terrain — Aggen identified a site located 330 feet north of the waterway, along Jones Avenue.

“It was my grandpa’s land,” Aggen said, adding that it now belongs to his dad and hopes it will someday be his. “I just started farming — this is my first full year.

“This is my only option to get started on our family’s quarter,” he added.

Nobles County Planning and Zoning Administrator Kathy Henderschiedt said she received no other communications regarding Aggen’s request.

“Adam’s been in multiple times over the past eight months,” she said. “He’s done the due diligence in research and getting all of the permits necessary.”

The Board of Adjustment approved Aggen’s request for a variance with two conditions on the site, that he provide dead animal containment on site and that manure generated from the swine be incorporated.

Julie Buntjer

Julie Buntjer joined the Globe newsroom in December 2003, after working more than nine years for weekly newspapers. A native of Worthington, she has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism. Find more of her stories of farm life, family and various other tidbits at The Farm Bleat

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