(3/15) Now that the Emmitsburg Planning
and Zoning Commission has had some time to look over the draft town
comprehensive plan, the discussion has started about what should change and
what should stay.
Chris Jakubiak, the town’s planning
consultant, met with the planning and zoning commission on Feb. 13 to start the
process of refining the plan that will guide development in Emmitsburg for the
next 25 years.
“Only after the public hearing will the
Planning Commission make any final decision on the plan,” Jakubiak explained to
the commission and the audience.
Jakubiak told the commission that by 2008,
Emmitsburg will have 1,112 houses.
“By 2030, we expect the number of households to reach 1,950 which translates
into a population of 4,800,” he said.
Commission member Tim O’Donnell expressed
concern that many of the new houses might be townhouses and some residents had
expressed reservations about that type of development.
Chairman Larry Little said, “Townhouses
are affordable housing. They’re not low quality. They’re not low-income
O’Donnell is a supporter of having
residences over the new stores that are proposed along Annandale Road to extend
the historic downtown look of Main Street.
“I want residences over shops so when the
town shuts down, it isn’t just an empty shell of stores,” O’ Donnell said. He
also noted that residential growth would be necessary to enhance current and
The draft plan tries to incorporate the
idea of a greenbelt around the town and many of the properties that would be in
this greenbelt have already been placed into some type of conservation
“This greenbelt concept is well on its way
to being established in Emmitsburg,” Jakubiak said.
Commission member Catherine Forrence
pointed out that the proposed parkway that would go around the Emmitsburg’s
southwest edge relieving some of the downtown traffic problems would go though
some environmentally sensitive areas.
Jakubiak said the parkway wouldn’t solve all of Emmitsburg’s traffic problems,
but “it certainly goes a long way in improving the traffic situation through
the center of town.”
He believes the parkway could be done
without changing the character of Mountain View Road, which would become part
of the parkway. Forrence said that a parkway would require major changes at the
Mountain View/Route 140 intersection.
O’Donnell expressed concerns about the
amount of growth that would need to be supported to pay for the parkway.
Developer Andy Mackintosh estimates the cost of the parkway at $10 million.
In the end, O’Donnell is not even sure
that a parkway will alleviate some of the truck traffic through downtown.
Jakubiak seemed to agree with him, saying,
“This is a state trucking route so it will be used for trucking even if we make
it more difficult to use.”
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