Details Continue To Be Worked OUt On Renn Annexation Agreement

The applicants want rezone part of it as light industrial.

Frederick, Md (KM) Discussion continued on Wednesday by the Frederick Board of Aldermen on a 387-acre annexation. The property owned by the Renn family is located on both the north and south sides of Gas House Pike east of the Riverside Corporate Park.

If the annexation is approved, the applicant plans to request a rezoning of 327-acres as light industrial, and the remaining 60-acres be resource conservation.

One of the issues was taxation. Documents from the city’s staff say that applicant could make an annual payment of  $6,000  each year prior to the time the parcel is developed. Other arrangements include reducing the 20-year period of non-payment of taxes, or establishing  an escalator on the proposed annual payments. “I heard loud and clear before we filed this application that the city wanted some payment, and so that’s what we’re trying to do,” said Attorney Bruce Dean, representing the applicant. “How you categorize it; how you define it, I’m sure that the Renn family is fine with that.”

Also talked about was water service to the property; specifically is there enough water to serve this development and other water customers in the city. Alderwoman Kelly Russell asked City Engineer Tracy Coleman if there is enough water to handle this development. “If there were to go through, there is enough water to do this development and not negatively impact the ability of other properties that may infill or closer the city center from development. We have enough to do all of it,” she asked.

“Yes,” Coleman responded.

Transportation was also another issue to come up. Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak said this annexation and the development of the property could help ease traffic congestion. “That’s  what has me looking at this positively very seriously is that possibility of mitigating some traffic issues that we have on {Route} 26 and Monocacy Boulevard, and that light at 26 and Monocacy Boulevard. But to me that’s huge,” she said.

Documents from the City Planning Office say that there needs to a definition of local improvements that are the responsibility of the developer, and those of a more regional nature that cannot be borne by one developer. Also, documents state, the city, county and the petitioner need to come to terms on Gas House Pike, to determine long and short term maintenance and ownership of the road.

The Aldermen were also talking about which party has the responsibility to remove some trees and a hill on the east end of the Renn property in order to extend the runway at Frederick Municipal Airport. Board member Donna Kuzemchak is against cutting down the trees. “I’m not going to support removal of the trees and knoll by this applicant,” she said.

But City Planner Tim Davis said refusing to remove these obstacles would hold up any extension of the runway. “If it doesn’t happen now, the FAA, when they decide to fund the runway extension, they’ll say ‘do you have all your easements? Do you have all your obstructions removed?’ And we’ll say ‘no.’ And they’ll say well, then we need to pay to remove the obstructions and acquire all the navigation easements so that you can extend your runway. That’s in the plan,” he said.

The Renn property is in the Airport Overlay.

The Aldermen are expected to further discuss this proposed annexation during a workshop in August.


By Kevin McManus