(3/15) The Thurmont Planning and
Zoning Committee took on one of the few
remaining tasks of the master plan – choosing
the town’s northern growth boundary. Along
with that they discussed the potential of an
industrial parkway as being a part of the
future of the town during a Mar. 1 meeting.
The new potential boundary to be included in the plan would begin north of
the intersection of Apples Church and Roddy Roads. This became a viable option
after concerns were brought up regarding the inclusion of the Graceham area,
which had been proposed for light industrial zoning.
But such an important issue would not easily be resolved. Throughout the
evening points and counterpoints were brought up as the diversity of the
committee became evident.
Both Randy Waesche and Sabrina Massett saw nothing wrong with the towns’
current boundary. “I think the ’98 boundary is adequate,” said Waesche.
Other board members, including Chairperson John Kinnaird saw the future of
Thurmont as including more light industrial space. “My thoughts on industrial
expansion have been to provide more jobs for people in Thurmont,” said
“Part of, I think, a problem in town is that there aren’t a lot of places to
work,” said Town Commissioner Ron Terpko. “You want to be able to attract and
to have what people need.”
Throughout the evening the board reminded themselves that designating these
new boundaries in the plan doesn’t automatically assume the town will grow that
way. “I think Thurmont has to think beyond what’s here,” said board member
Sandra Hunter. “This doesn’t mean we’re going to walk out there tomorrow and
Some members felt uneasy about the idea and saw the new boundary as an
invitation to urbanization. “I believe that when you color a map and put it in
a master plan, that begets development,” said Waesche.
“I don’t think that because we’re updating the master plan every so many
years like we’re supposed to doesn’t mean we have to monkey around with areas
that don’t need to be messed with,” said Waesche.
The discussed industrial parkway would start somewhere around the Graceham
Road and Apples Church Road intersection, near NVR, and move northwest up to
“It’s something I think we need and I think it would benefit a lot of
businesses and residents in Thurmont,” said Kinnaird.
The road would not only alleviate traffic stresses, but Kinnaird believes
would provide a safer driving environment. “It would possibly eliminate three
dangerous intersections on 15 and combine it into one safer intersection,” he
said. The parkway will be noted in the master plan, but will be drawn outside
of the town’s boundaries.