Should a horse park come to Arundel?

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Thoughts on issues relating to Anne Arundel County

September 04, 2005

Infrastructure is not a great concern

I don't see why Anne Arundel County Executive Janet S. Owens thinks that a lack of infrastructure should limit development of a horse park at Crownsville. In truth, a horse park requires much less infrastructure than many other uses - for instance, a large indoor sports complex, a shopping mall or a school. Water, sewer, parking, and electric power are of course required for all uses - but a horse park will use far less of each of these than the other uses I mentioned.

A horse park is mainly open space with a relatively small number of square feet under roof. What exactly does Ms. Owens think could be developed at Crownsville that would require less infrastructure than the horse park? Even road access is not a difficult issue, since each event draws far fewer spectators than might arrive in a day for a mall, ballpark or school.

The economics of a horse park are quite different, and cash into the community comes in a much more dispersed way, from restaurant and hotel receipts, as opposed to sales taxes. How many people stay overnight when shopping at a mall? If the horse park makes economic sense from other aspects, I can't see that the infrastructure investment should be a driving factor in the equation - it is less than for many other uses.

Jo Ellen Hayden

Lower Marlboro

City's horse park plan is first-class

I support the proposal submitted by the City of Annapolis to the Maryland Stadium Authority to build the Maryland Horse Park at the Crownsville location.

The state's vision is a world-class regional, national and international tourist, sports and educational venue. Building upon the historical and continued critical role of the horse to Maryland will fuel tourist, economic and job development. It will also afford an opportunity to preserve and protect open space and watershed resources, promote the horse industry and preserve agriculture. The goal is to exceed the success of the Kentucky Horse Park.

The city's excellent proposal offers a unique approach of preserving more than 1,000 acres of state and city land in the Crownsville area and building upon existing resources. With our central location and existing infrastructure (roads, hotels, restaurants), the Annapolis plan affords the opportunity for infusion of dollars to the local economy without extensive outlays of public funds or negative impact on residents.

Opportunities for riding and other outdoor recreational activities will expand as lands are preserved between Annapolis and Crownsville corridor. Protecting this greenway corridor will enhance the quality of life for those who live here.

I urge all citizens to support the city's proposal. If successful, it will be an economic, recreational and environmental boon to our region.

Christina Aist

Annapolis

The writer is a member of the Annapolis Recreation & Parks Advisory Board

Crownsville apt site for proposal

Crownsville Hospital Center complex is a perfect location and will be great for our economy. It will be an economic help to our area. Our area is growing as well due to the increase in employment at Fort Meade. This area needs more activities for its citizens, particularly children. It has been said "the best thing for the inside of a man is the outside of a horse." Since racing seems to be leaving Maryland, let's bring the horse back as a friend in sports for everyone in the family to enjoy.

Kathleen Harjess

Annapolis

Park would benefit state of Maryland

I am fully in favor of a horse park in Anne Arundel County.

As an avid rider and competitor, I am in favor of the proposed park for the obvious benefits it would have for me and my sport. But as a Maryland resident, I think this could be a wonderful benefit for the state.

For starters, it would simply be nice to see something done with land in this state other than a housing development or yet another chain of stores. Additionally, if Maryland were to ever hope to host an Olympics, a sizable venue would be a must.

With a horse park of this scope, Maryland would also be able to host a World Equestrian Games, as Las Vegas just did very successfully this summer. Although Cecil County has the room to build a beautiful facility, it is, unfortunately, too rural to be able to handle the crowd for an event of any magnitude.

The Crownsville area would be the perfect location, as it is in close proximity to an international airport, plenty of hotels and restaurants and lots of tourist attractions.

Karen Serafin

Glen Burnie

Park would boost area businesses

Absolutely yes - there is no doubt that a state horse park would provide a great boost to the business in our area.

In addition, it would allow the county to create a large recreational green space to be used and enjoyed by all much the same as Fair Hill has been used by hikers, runners, bikers, etc.

Celia Vornholt Oakland Ridge Farm, Harwood

Park would have a variety of uses

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