The LaFarge Property at 633 Earls Road is located in Eastern Baltimore County in the area where Chase/Oliver Beach/Bowleys Quarters intersect, consisting of 400 acres of land zoned for Rural Conservation use. This property has been used as a sand and gravel pit for the past 75-years by the LaFarge Company, and is surrounded by properties with zoning of Rural Conservation, Residential and Light Manufacturing.  

Near the end of her term in 2022, the preceding Baltimore County Council Representative of this property created a Resolution (39-22) which permitted a Planned Unit Development (PUD) on the aforementioned property that will include an industrial park/office park containing a total of 2.82 +/- million square feet with associated infrastructure.  

The residents of Chase/Oliver Beach/Bowleys Quarters and surrounding areas are very much opposed to the Middle River Business Park PUD for various reasons, including:  

·         This development is premature, since there is still active mining & reclamation activity on the property ·         The proposed PUD conflicts with the Baltimore County Master Plan of 2020, and the Master Plan of 2030 is incomplete at this time

·         The 400 acre property is zoned RC8 for Rural Conservation, the purpose of which is to protect the watersheds and extensive natural areas. Permitted uses under RC8 zoning are agricultural & low density uses. These 400 acres are ecologically important to both the Gunpowder & Bird River watersheds, along with the wildlife which reside there.  An almost 3 million square feet industrial park/office park is a completely inappropriate use of this property and will have damaging, irreversible effects on wild life and the associated watersheds.

·         The proposed development is inconsistent with the surrounding community, which is rural/farming, residential with some mixed manufacturing use.

·         This proposed development is a Zoning Change and not a PUD, and as such should be subject to the same processes as all other zoning change requests submit, which at this time is the Comprehensive Zoning Map Process (CZMP).

·         A third party evaluation of the Baltimore County Fire Department was completed in December 2022 which found that the Baltimore County Fire Department “lacks sufficient EMS response capacity to address current and proposed service requests.” Due to this finding, we feel that developing an almost 3 million square feet industrial park/office will attract several thousand employees and tens of thousands of daily truck traffic, placing an undue burden on an already overly burdened EMS system.

·         The developer has made an agreement with the developer of Greenleigh that certain roads will not be permitted for truck use, thereby pushing all truck use to Eastern Avenue and/or Ebenezer Road. Earls Road, Eastern Avenue and Ebenezer Road are facing major improvements including widening and the addition of sidewalks/bike lanes.

Therefore, based on the above, I am very much opposed to the Middle River Park PUD/LaFarge Property Development, located at 633 Earl Road in Baltimore County.    

Josh Sines and/or Heather Patti    Contact the author of the petition

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