Appeals panel approves Exxon service center

February 21, 1997

An article in Friday's Howard County edition of The Sun tTC mischaracterized actions taken by the county Board of Appeals in considering plans for a combination gas station, convenience store and fast-food restaurant at Gorman Road and U.S. 1. It also misidentified the source of concerns about the proximity of the facility to the highway and the reason the matter was subject to the board's approval.

According to Donna Thewes, secretary to the administrative assistant to the board, no one appeared at the board meeting to testify against the proposal, but board members discussed several issues extensively before granting approval -- including expressing concerns about the effect of its lighting on motorists. The project was before the county board because of zoning considerations, though the location of the facility also impinges on the state's 65-foot right-of-way by the highway.

The Sun regrets the errors.

The Howard County Board of Appeals has granted Exxon a special exception to build a combination gasoline station, convenience store and fast-food restaurant in Savage at the corner of Gorman Road and U.S. 1.

FOR THE RECORD - CORRECTION

The board voiced no opposition at Tuesday's meeting to Exxon's special request after company representatives agreed to take precautions in constructing the service center, which will be set 45 feet back from U.S. 1 -- 20 feet closer than county regulations allow.

The setback requirement is designed to ensure that lights from a service station do not disturb drivers. An Exxon representative said the construction of buffers and use of nonglare lights will solve the problem, and the board agreed.

The board also approved Exxon's parking plans for the center, which would include a Wendy's restaurant, though they also did not meet county standards.

The Exxon proposal is for three businesses in a combination not covered by county regulations, forcing the board to make a new combination.

"The board combined regulations for a service station-convenience store with that for a fast-food place when they assessed Exxon's request," said Donna Thewes, administrative assistant for the board. "There was not much of a debate, though, because Exxon's requests were not difficult, and it did say it would handle the lights situation."

Pub Date: 2/21/97

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