June 18, 2024
Annapolis, US 80 F

Letter: Proposed development at Saltworks Creek will destroy neighborhood and environment

On December 13, 2019, two days before the new Forest Conservation Law went into effect, Monticello Property Group LLC a subsidiary of Hogan Cos, filed a special exception to change zoning on 47 acres of R-1 residential land, to develop a 4 story 16 bed assisted living center with 76 individual villas.

The proposal submitted is requesting the development of 20 acres of R-1 land with an additional 26 acres of critical area, including a bridge over the recently restored Cabin Branch Stream and Saltworks Creek.

In 2013 Cabin Branch Stream was completely restored at a cost of $950,000 to raise the steam to reconnect with the floodplain, after the Sam”s club parking lot was placed over the headwater wetlands. For years pollution from the mall runoff killed much of the aquatic life and threatened flooding to the surrounding communities. Now with the restoration completed, the loss of 46 acres of Forest and all of the wildlife that it contains, will not only destroy the stream and creek, but threaten the surrounding neighborhoods yet again.

With that being said, what the proposal does not show is that the entrance to this acreage is only accessible via the Monticello Subdivision. A closed community of 75 homes with more than 50 children under the age of 16. If this development is passes, it will be the demise of this neighborhood. In this design of Monticello, there are very few usable backyards, which is wonderful in the fact that it is like an old fashioned neighborhood. Everyone knows one another, the kids ride bikes, play street hockey and basketball, all via our streets. If this development happens, all traffic including workers, residents, construction and emergency vehicles with be driving directly through the center of the neighborhood. The safety of the children and quality of life in Monticello will be gone.

There is no direct access nor any traffic lights to slow down the cars. With the soon to be completed 100,000 sq ft office building on Bestgate, and the recent opening of a multiple bed assisted living facility on Generals Hwy., there will be NO green space left. The traffic on Bestgate is also of great concern, The backups have increased significantly and access to Generals Hwy. is nearly impossible at rush hour, The development in Annapolis (Anne Arundel county) has surpassed the infrastructure of the current roads. Crime has increased and there is no relief in sight, only more building.

This may seem small in the building world, however it is very important for the homeowners of Monticello. It is very frustrating that Hogan Cos, founded by Gov. Larry Hogan is trying to push this zoning change through right before a unanimously signed  law went into effect to save the remaining open space in Anne Arundel county.

Amy Garwood, Annapolis, MD

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