A shopping center for the Seven Oaks development in Odenton moved one step closer to reality Friday, when a county hearing officer consolidated two parcels of land into one commercial district.

About 3.5of the 20 acres slated for a neighborhood shopping center were zonedfor residential use. The Halle Cos. claimed a mistake was made during the county's 1988 comprehensive rezoning. The county agreed.

The remaining 16.5 acres of the parcel are zoned to allow commercial uses. Now, all 20 acres are zoned commercial.

Seven Oaks is a 4,700-unit development being built on 590 acres at the intersection of routes 32 and 175.

The land needed for the Giant is a small strip located in the northeast portion of the 20-acre site, just east ofRoute 175 along Blue Water Boulevard.

Halle argued that a flood plane, which runs along the northern edge of the parcel, serves as a natural buffer between the proposed shopping center and the residential neighborhood. It said the intent of comprehensive rezoning was to zone all the land running up to the flood plane commercial.

The decision does not give Halle permission to build the shopping center, however. The company still needs to submit detailed plans to the countyand go through at least one more public hearing before beginning construction.

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