More Testimony Taken On Sugarloaf Plan

Sugarloaf Mountain (Photo from Stronghold Corporation)

The Frederick County Council held a workshop on the plan.

Frederick, Md. (KM) – More citizen comment was taken Monday night during a Frederick County Council workshop on the proposed Sugarloaf Treasured Landscape Management Plan.

Ingrid Rosencranz lives on Fingerboard Road and she supports the plan. “I like to reiterate that the goal of this plan is preservation,”: she said. “To have a chance of meeting this goal in the face of extreme development pressure, it seems best that the plan directly states that the area of west of 270 is for preservation and part of the county’s green infrastructure.”

But Jim McIntosh, who lives on Park Mills Road, says there’ s no danger of the Sugarloaf area being overwhelmed by massive development. “From Route 28 all the way up to Flint Hill, there’s been six houses built on Park Mills Road in 60, 70 years; six houses,” he says. “There’s no tsunami of development that gonna happen in this area.”

The Sugarloaf Treasured Landscape Management Plan covers up o 20,000 acres of land from the Montgomery County line to the Monocacy National Battlefield, which is mostly farms and forests. I-270 is the boundary line between development east of the highway, and preservation on the west side.

Gabe Lawson and his wife have a farm along Monocacy Bottom Road. He says the County is trying to control his land by rezoning it from agriculture to resource conservation. “We have been good stewards of this property and would never do anything to harm it. Actually, we have continuously taken action to enhance its value. This property is also on a very narrow, dead end road. With this restriction, and given the large amount of flood plain, this property is not reasonable to develop.” He recommended the Council remand the plan back to the Planning Commission for further review.

Johanna Springston expressed her support for the plan. “I would like to see the preservation overlay extended over the entire area. And I would like to see the language on page 54 changed so this plan is a long term one,  and not simply amended in a few years,”; she said.

The County Planning staff is holding an open house on the Plan on Thursday, August 18th from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM at Urbana High School.

By Kevin McManus