We received Ken Ulman's jubilant email message regarding Money Magazine naming Columbia and Ellicott City second in the nation in their assessment of best places to live and work. Indeed, this is a great coup, well-deserved and a source of pride! However, what he didn't choose to mention is that the findings also cited a major problem here – that is, "bad traffic"! (See the red ink on page 68 of the magazine.)
Mr. Ulman and the County Council, including Mary Kay Sigaty, pushed through an approval of the developer's plan for a huge increase in housing (5500 units, almost 500 per cent more than currently exist in downtown), 1.25 million square feet of retail, and 6 million square feet of offices in downtown – with inadequate controls on the developer to provide new traffic capacity. In fact, this law ignored the overwhelming opinion of the planning Charrette of 2005, as well as the views of several traffic studies by leading experts. These experts have great concern that the plan approved by the County Council is way out of balance. It allows much more new development than the proposed road system can handle.