Waverly II plan assailed long and hard at hearing

November 10, 1992|By Erik Nelson | Erik Nelson,Staff Writer

Opposition leaders leveled philosophical and technical objections last night to rezoning for the proposed 682-acre Waverly Woods II development in Marriottsville and Woodstock.

Nearing the end of the longest county Zoning Board hearing since the 1970s, the witnesses argued for more than three hours against a package of zoning changes that would allow a commercial, residential and golfing village in the rural area just north of Interstate 70.

"For the last year and a half, I have been waiting for someone to prove to me why this [Waverly] proposal is good," said Jean Quattlebaum, president of Citizens Allied for Rational Growth.

Mrs. Quattlebaum and hundreds of other area residents have registered their opposition to transforming the community of three-acre homesites and farms by showing up at hearings, but only 25 people attended the one last night.

Mrs. Quattlebaum said she has yet to see an unbiased traffic survey to prove that, with minor improvements, Route 99 and Marriottsville Road could handle the tenfold increase in traffic that the project is expected to generate.

"Instead, I heard how most people living in the community would be walking to the employment center" inside the proposed development, she said. "Show me a community anywhere where this assumption can be proven."

Mrs. Quattlebaum also noted the lack of discussion on completion of the Marriottsville Road interchange with Interstate 70 or the addition of lanes to the interstate.

Opponents of the rezoning have argued that such improvements would be needed but are not required by the county's adequate public facilities law.

As had witnesses before her, Mrs. Quattlebaum spoke of school overcrowding, impact on the environment and wildlife, and her belief that a $110,700 condominium is not "affordable."

"Try to qualify for those prices as a nurse, schoolteacher or policeman," said Mrs. Quattlebaum, who has been a real estate agent in the county for 16 years.

"Since the beginning of these hearings, I have been harassed and insulted by supporters of this proposal, as have been my friends and neighbors." Still, she said, "we are ready to fight to the bitter end."

Larry Yeager, an engineer who works in land planning and lives about a mile from the proposed project, attacked technical aspects of the site plan, which was filed as part of the rezoning petition.

He noted that the county code requires the site plan to meet technical requirements but that the Department of Planning and Zoning's report on the development says only that it "has the potential" to do so.

Mr. Yeager criticized the plan for putting the most dense residential development next to the least dense and said its use of large areas impervious to water would contribute to pollution of streams that feed into the Chesapeake Bay.

Closing arguments and rebuttals are expected at the 14th hearing, at 9:30 a.m. next Tuesday in the Howard Building.

The rezoning package would allow 1.7 million square feet of office or other commercial space on 372 acres, a village shopping center on 8.5 acres, up to 300 condominiums and apartments on 42.6 acres, up to 503 town houses on 107.6 acres and up to 215 detached houses on 69.8 acres.

The developer, Donald Reuwer, has compared the project, planned around a shopping center and golf course, to a Columbia village.

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