Carroll County 2014 Draft Comprehensive Plan Nears Finalization

A September 21 Carroll County Times article reported on concerns and changes in Carroll County’s 2014 draft comprehensive master plan.  The plan is currently subject to public review and the planning commission will decide whether to approve the plan on November 9.  The plan will then go to the County’s Board of Commissioners.

The article focused on two main issues with the plan:  (1) concern by the residents of Taneytown about the potential location of a plasma gasification plant at the borders of the town; and (2) shrinkage of the County’s designated growth areas.

The article reported on a September 9 meeting held with Taneytown residents about the potential plant:

Taneytown and nearby residents expressed concern over the noise, smell, traffic and general discomfort they would experience if a plasma gasification plant was built on the edge of the Taneytown city limits.

[Carroll County Director of Land Use Phil] Hager stressed that even if the master plan was adopted with the land-use change, the property owners would still need to go through a public and open process if they wanted its zoning changed in the future.

The article explained the reason the County’s designated growth areas were reduced:

Designated growth areas are small geographic areas where the majority of Carroll’s planned residential, commercial and industrial development is currently concentrated and future growth is planned.  …

County spokeswoman Roberta Windham said the planning commission chose to shrink the size of the county’s nine DGAs to accommodate current and future growth with regard to water resources. That meant that nearly 18,000 more acres of land were added into the master plan, and taken out of the individual DGA comprehensive plans.

The article also noted that the 2014 plan also increases the number of acres allowed to be used for industrial and business purposes.