Week In Review

September 25, 2005

Clarksville among 6 honored schools

Clarksville Elementary School was among six Maryland schools named national Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education.

The six were named Maryland Blue Ribbon schools last year. They are among 295 Blue Ribbon schools nationwide.

Other schools recognized in Maryland are Folger McKinsey Elementary in Anne Arundel County, Sparks Elementary in Baltimore County, Rock Hall Elementary in Kent County, Viers Mill Elementary in Montgomery County and Showell Elementary in Worcester County, the state Education Department said.

Maryland Section, Page 3B, Wednesday, 09/21/2005

Schools unveil redistricting plan

The school system unveiled to the public this week a redistricting plan to fill a new elementary school in Dayton and relieve crowding at neighboring schools in the west.

The preliminary redistricting proposal not only takes into account the opening of the 788-seat elementary school in August 2006, it also considers a new Ellicott City elementary school in 2007 and several other elementary school projects in the county's western region.

Superintendent Sydney L. Cousin is scheduled to present his recommendations to the school board Oct. 27. The school board is set to hold several work sessions and a public hearing before it makes its decision Nov. 22.

Howard Section, Page 1G, Wednesday, 09/21/2005

`Density bank' urged by citizen panel

Hoping to break a stalemate over proposals to further restrict development in western Howard County, a citizens committee has asked the county to consider overhauling its land preservation program by creating a "density bank" that would protect farmland and property values of large landowners.

The suggestion is not a formal recommendation, but the committee is looking for alternatives to the county's proposed zoning changes, and it wants to determine whether the concept should be pursued.

It is unclear whether the county would be willing to adopt such a program, but Marsha S. McLaughlin, director of planning and zoning, said her department will examine the proposal.

The essence of the plan is for the county to spend millions of dollars to acquire building rights, or density, from property owners in the west and then to "bank" them until they are sold to developers over a number of years. Proponents of the idea said that as property values increase the county might make a profit on its investment, although that is neither guaranteed nor the motivation.

Such a concept was considered and rejected a few years ago by the county.

Howard Section, Page 1G, Wednesday, 09/21/2005

Lakefront tower plan advancing

Plans for a 22-story lakefront tower in Town Center are moving forward even as the county prepares for a new planning process designed to map out central Columbia's future.

Howard Section, Page 1G, Friday, 09/23/2005

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