The Eldersburg Big Box Store Simple Survey

The question is, “Are you okay with re-zoning 1503 Liberty Road for individual store sizes larger than 100,000 SF?”

Hi. As you may already know, recent efforts to pass a text amendment that would increase maximum individual store size on all B-NR (Business – Neighborhood Retail) zoned property, countywide, from 10,000 SF to 50,000 SF were not successful.  The Board of Commissioners voted 4 to 1 against approval with District 5 (Eldersburg) Commissioner Doug Howard taking the lead on your behalf.

This was the second time that efforts to rezone the vacant property we’re showing you in the Google satellite image below have failed. And now, it all comes down to the Freedom Community Comprehensive Plan (FCCP).

The property we’re talking about is 1503 Liberty Road and related smaller parcels, bounded by Liberty Road across the top, Georgetown Blvd. on the left and Homeland Drive on the right.

If the FCCP is approved in its current form by the Board of Commissioners, there will be three new zoning classifications, C1, C2 and C3. The “C” stands for “commercial.”

• C1 zoning will limit individual store sizes to 10,000 SF and, in this regard, is the same as the B-NR zoning it replaces.

• C2 zoning limits individual store sizes to 100,000 SF – large enough for most “big box” stores.

• C3 zoning is effectively unlimited and will allow individual stores in excess of 100,000 SF.

If the current FCCP and the zoning map that will be based on the new plan are approved, 1503 Liberty Road will be rezoned C3, that is, for very large “big box” store development. That’s right. “C3,” will allow stores as large as the Walmart Supercenter down the street at the Eldersburg Commons shopping center, or a Home Depot, Lowes or Costco. The question is, is that okay with you? To find out, we’re asking you to fill out the following simple survey.

Notice that we’re not asking for your name or street address, but only for your email address to differentiate your response from other adults, 18 years or older, who fill out the survey. No one will contact you unless you ask to be kept up to date. And no email addresses will be included with the summary results when we publish them.

There’s a joint meeting of the Board of Commissioners and the Planning and Zoning Commission on September 6.  We’ll give you the details later.  In the meantime, please fill-out this survey by no later than August 31.

Thank you. Here’s the survey. Please don’t hesitate to make a comment or suggestion inside the survey or as a comment at the bottom of this post.

And if you have time, please email your comments via email to Commissioner Howard to DHoward@ccg.carr.gov.

 

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2 thoughts on “The Eldersburg Big Box Store Simple Survey

  1. We have enough traffic in the area. I would like to see the current traffic/limited routes to be considered before more stores and housing are added to the area. More stores/housing also adds more potential for crime in the area.

    • Hi. Thanks for your comment.

      The problem for Eldersburg is that the County planners are running out of places they can control, places where they can do what they believe is necessary to grow the County’s population and tax revenues. All the incorporated cities – including Westminster and Sykesville – are autonomous. They make their own planning and zoning decisions. So that leaves Eldersburg, which is unincorporated, as the focal point for growth – at your expense. The County is asking… Actually they’re telling you to “take one for the County.”

      And the Board of Commissioners isn’t all that helpful. Doug Howard represents Eldersburg, but there 4 other Commissioners whose constituents are opposing growth in their districts. It’s a real problem for Eldersburg. Without incorporation, which has its costs and benefits, you’re pretty much defenseless.

      Tomorrow, Thursday, September 21, there’s an “Open Forum For The Public” starting at 6:30 PM at the Senior Center. The more people who come, the more the Board will realize how many Eldersburg residents are adamantly opposed to high density residential and large store commercial development.

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