County sets tree buffer for airport

January 07, 1994|By Donna E. Boller | Donna E. Boller,Staff Writer

Residents of the Kalten Acres subdivision can look forward to a tree buffer between their homes and the expanded Carroll County Airport.

And county government officials can look forward to a runway uncluttered by wild animals.

The county commissioners agreed by consensus yesterday to meet forest conservation law requirements by planting trees in the wetlands of a former farm, rather than in two areas closer to the airport runway as originally planned.

A consultant had obtained Federal Aviation Administration approval for the original sites, according to James E. Slater, head of environmental services.

PTC But in a discussion on the planting sites, other county officials worried aloud that trees would attract animals to the runway. "We might be encouraging additional trespassing by unauthorized wildlife," said Robert "Max" Bair, the commissioners' executive assistant.

Commissioner Julia W. Gouge suggested that deer attracted by the trees could damage small planes that fly out of the local airport.

The commissioners decided to plant 25 acres of trees in $H wetlands on the former Pauline Byers Shaffer farm on Meadow Branch Road. To meet the forest ordinance requirement of 50 acres of trees for the project, the county will plant an additional 25 acres on other properties.

The tree buffer for Kalten Acres subdivision is an extra benefit, said Neil Ridgely, county forest conservation program manager.

Trees in the wetlands will protect an environmentally sensitive area, providing a buffer for Meadow Branch (a stream) and a screen for the houses in Kalten Acres, Mr. Ridgely said. The subdivision is on Route 97 north of the airport.

He said the trees will be on land east of the runway and northeast of the county maintenance facility on Meadow Branch Road.

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