The county Planning Board will meet Tuesday to consider the third request in a year to change the zoning for office/research properties next to the northern segment of U.S. 29 in Ellicott City.
Howard Health Park Associates Limited Partnership is asking for the board's endorsement of a change that would allow a golf training and recreation center on any land zoned for planned office/research (POR). The partnership owns 13.3 acres of POR land between the end of Town and Country Boulevard and Route 29.
A golf center could include a golf course with short fairways, small greens, supporting build ings and a restaurant. It could also be built on parcels ranging from 5 to 20 acres, the proposal says.
The change will not be enacted unless it is approved by the County Council, which also sits as the Zoning Board.
The developer has approached county planners about the possibility of building a golf center for practice putting and driving at the Ellicott City site.
Since the market for office buildings nearly crashed last year, several developers have sought to rezone POR land. Two of them have been in the same area for which the golf center is planned.
One of those petitions, for Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s two warehouse-sized stores on 54 acres just south of the Howard Health Park site, dragged out over 10 nights of hearings. The county Zoning Board will not rule on the case until late next month at the earliest.
The planning board recommended against that change.
The other petition sought residential zoning that would have allowed about 1,000 apartments north of the Health Park site. That was put on hold in January, a week before the County Council passed an adequate public facilities law the developer said could delay the project for years.
The Planning Board will also consider final approval of building plans for 35 town houses in the Brightfield subdivision in lower Ellicott City.
The board's approval would clear the way for construction by Ryan Homes on Brightwind Court, the first court of the final section in the 3-year-old development.
About 200 homes have been built in the 330-home development between Meadowridge Road, Old Montgomery Road and the planned Route 100. The remaining homes are expected to be completed in two to three years.