Linton Springs mobilizing forces against Belt Farm Civic association considers hiring zoning lawyer


The Linton Springs Civic Association is considering building a legal war chest to fight the development of Belt Farm, which they say could add much unwanted traffic to their only access to Liberty Road.

"We may have to ask each association family to contribute $50 to a war chest," said Joseph H. Mettle, the outgoing association president. "We may have to hire a zoning lawyer to fight for us."

At the association's meeting last week, about 75 people joined in a lengthy discussion of Belt Farm, a development that is proposed for a site behind their back doors.

Ronald Carter, a Howard County developer, plans to build 99 houses on the 203-acre site east of Linton Road, the area's only egress to Liberty Road.

Association members, who represent nearly all 218 homes in the 20-year-old development, oppose adding any more traffic to the narrow, winding road.

The attendance at the meeting -- the highest in 13 years -- showed that residents are concerned about the project, Mr. Mettle said.

The discussion lacked input from Carroll County officials.

"We would like to talk with county officials and planners," Mr. Mettle said. "They won't participate in our discussions until they see the builder's new concept plans."

Mr. Mettle said he has received a letter from the county commissioners stating that "they would be glad to talk when there is something to talk about."

Since public water and sewer have become available in the area, Mettle said residents fear that the builder may request rezoning for Belt Farm.

"That could mean 300 houses instead of 99," Mr. Mettle said. "People are distraught, but I have told them to wait and see what the proposal is. I hope we can embrace what the county offers."

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