4:11 PM EDT, September 27, 2012
The following letter was sent to the County Executive and County Council. A copy was provided for publication.
Now that the Traffic Studies and site plan for the Wal Mart Super Store have been submitted, here is what I would expect that my elected representatives will do: Review it with the appropriate County office, e.g., Planning and Zoning; Determine if 10,000 more cars a day will have an impact on our ALREADY overcrowded traffic infrastructure; Take ALL of the appropriate steps necessary to mitigate our danger and loss of quality of life.
To me, of course, this means to STOP it. End this travesty to our lives. I do NOT want to hear what you can't do – I only want to hear what you can, and will, do to protect us from this nightmare.
It is very convenient to tell us that it is now out of your hands. That lets you off of the hook because you then can shift the blame to civil servants. But you, our elected representatives, are the ones I will be looking to for resolution. You are the people who serve at our will through elections.
I know there are steps you can co. In July 2009, Capt'n Jim personally was able to rezone a R1 home at Emmorton Road and Patterson Mill Road (across from the new fire station) to RO over the community's objection. The impact of this time bomb from the Capt'n is that a RO – Residential Office will also add measurably to the traffic nightmare. This will allow for the conversion of this residential structure to other uses and (or) construction of small retail, service, and office buildings in predominantly residential area. Some of the uses this parcel will be allowed are: Agricultural retail; Antique shops, art galleries and museums; Business services, including commercial schools; Civic service clubs and fraternal organizations; Community centers or assembly halls; Cottage houses (permitted subject to temporary-use regulations, pursuant to § 267-28 temporary uses); Country inns, tourist homes and resorts; Day-care centers; Duplex dwellings; Financial, insurance and real estate services; Fire stations; Garden apartment dwellings maximum of four units; Group home for sheltered care; Health services and medical clinics; Houses of worship; Lot-line swellings; Mobile homes (permitted subject to special-exception regulations, pursuant to Article XI.); Nursing homes and Assisted living facilities; Personal services, excluding tattoo parlors; Personal-care boarding homes; Professional services; Public utility facilities, sanitary landfills and sewage treatment plants; Rubble landfills; Semi-detached dwellings; Sewage pumping stations; Shoppers merchandise stores; Specialty shop.
Any of these uses will also increase the traffic on roads that already cannot accommodate what use we have. Moreover, the Site Plan submitted by Wal Mart shows a plot of undeveloped land west of the proposed super store that is almost as large. This land will surely want to be developed as well and that will multiply our woes immeasurably.
To summarize: The Council is contemplating land use in this residential area of: A Wal Mart Super Store; A business or other high volume use on the corner of Emmorton and Patterson Mill; A Fire Station on the same corner; A 1700 pupil School; Some other large commercial enterprise next door to Wal Mart.
You have been elected to represent your constituents and not developers. Now photo-ops, testimonials, county fairs, parades, proclamations and certificates are all fine and good and fun. I think they are important, but there is much more to do. Please, please give us relief from this juggernaut of development in our residential neighborhood.