20 October 2006

Petition Update

Last winter, I attended the Liz Bobo downtown meeting and signed a petition. The petition stated the following:
We the undersigned concerned citizens request:
that specific, hard data relating to housing, schools, traffic, roads, water and sewer, environment, fiscal responsibility, as well as phasing and monitoring of the proposed
development be studied and made available to the public BEFORE the Draft Master
Plan for Downtown Columbia is presented to the Planning Board and the County

I have been to the Howard County Charrette/Focus Group website and it seems the county has authored reports that address most (if not all) of these issues. So are we done? Have the terms of the petition been met? Can we move on? I’m not sure, but I was hoping to get input from y’all on this one. Please comment.


Anonymous said...

Do you really think sufficient "specific, hard data" has been published? I don't.

Is the impact of BRAC truly reflected in the schools data? Is the impact of APFO-free over-55 development freeing up other housing stock for families with school-aged children truly reflected in school data? Are all environmental impacts resulting from greenspace loss and protected, sensitive area intrusions fully explained and justified?

B. Santos said...

My Anonymous Friend,

This post was just asking the question. I seems the county has made effort to address the petition. I was looking for clarification of progress. Your concerns are valid, but are they within the context of the petition? The impact of BRAC is certainly a concern, but because it is undefined, what are we to do? Delay all development until the commission study is complete? Would the delay in development put us ahead or behind with respect to our ability to absorb government employees and their families?

With respect to loss of greenspace, if an undeveloped plot of land has been designated, for over 30 years, as commercial development property, is this a loss of greenspace when it is developed? I would think from a legal sense, the answer is no. Otherwise, I do not understand where greenspace is lost in any iteration of the downtown development plans.

Let us start having a discussion here. We all have been asking a lot of questions. Let us find more answers. Has the county met any portion of the petition. I would say yes. Now let's get some responses such that we can reach a conclusion.