Annapolis will delay development Pensinsula is promised action on road problems

November 06, 1996|By Dan Thanh Dang | Dan Thanh Dang,SUN STAFF

Annapolis Neck Peninsula residents claimed a tiny victory yesterday in their fight to keep the city of Annapolis from swallowing whole tracts for developers.

Although the city council annexed another 140 acres on Monday, city officials agreed to halt development on the properties until traffic problems on Forest Drive are addressed.

The developers of the annexed land say the temporary halt is not a problem.

Alan J. Hyatt, an Annapolis lawyer representing the developers for the Crisland Corp. and Skipper properties, said he doesn't see the delay in development as "a moratorium," but "a start to finding the right solution for the area."

His clients have "acknowledged that Forest Drive needs some help, so they are prepared to be a part of the solution, and I mean financially," Hyatt said.

The council voted 6-1 to annex the 37.9-acre Skipper property near Green Briar Lane and Forest Drive, and the 103-acre Crisland Corp. property near Bywater Road.

Developers are proposing townhouses for the Skipper property and 200 single family homes for the Crisland property.

An amendment to the annexation measure proposed by Alderman Shepard Tullier "kills two birds with one stone" by temporarily halting building in the area and providing some incentive to get road projects done, he said.

"No use or occupancy permits will be issued on the properties until one or more road projects that would improve the Forest Drive traffic adequacy has been designed, fully funded and under construction, or construction is imminent," said Tullier, a Ward 4 Democrat.

The city and county are planning a $10 million to $12 million connector road between Aris T. Allen Boulevard and Hilltop Lane that would tie into Spa Road to ease traffic from the Crisland property. Hyatt said his clients will contribute to that project.

Residents on the peninsula say their months of late-night meetings, testifying before the city council and lobbying elected officials have paid off.

"If they are saying they will not permit building in the area until there is a comprehensive development plan, then it's a very big step forward for us," said Barbara Samorajczyk, a board member of the Annapolis Neck Federation, a coalition of homeowners' organizations.

"All along we've been making little steps to be heard and [Monday's] vote was an absolute recognition that there are very real problems in the peninsula," Samorajczyk said.

City officials must work with the Anne Arundel County Council to find the best development plans to ease traffic on Forest Drive, the main artery through the peninsula, said Alderman Dean Johnson, a Ward 2 Independent.

Pub Date: 11/06/96

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