22 Aug 2014
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Marks' Zoning Plan Calls for Curbing Perry Hall Development

Plan proposed by Baltimore County Councilman David Marks is expected to reduce possible increases in density and development of more than 280 acres of Perry Hall.

Referring to land zoning as one of his "most important responsibilities," recently , which spans Towson and Perry Hall.

More than half of the impacted area, about 281 acres, would be located within Perry Hall's boundaries, Marks informed Patch Tuesday afternoon.

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The plan calls for the immediate downzoning of about 72 acres with a review of 209 more. The downzoning process would reduce possible increases in density and development. Many areas that currently allow 5.5 dwelling units per acre would be reduced to 1 dwelling unit per acre, based on the plan.

Plan proposals will be factored into the county's 2012 Comprehensive Zoning Map Process, which reexamines zoning designations every four years. The County Council is scheduled to vote on the final zoning map by Sept. 16.

While downzoning can help lessen the stress on public infrastructure, including schools and roads, it also tends to lower a property's selling value and may restrict the actions of prospective home builders, home buyers, investors and business owners, according to county zoning documents.

"On the one hand, development creates jobs and expands Baltimore County's tax base, and I respect the right of property owners to make a profit by selling their land," Marks stated. "On the other hand, I am concerned about the ability of our schools and infrastructure to absorb growth, and I want to preserve the quality of life that has made Perry Hall such an appealing community."

Zoning changes to the latter 209 acres are pending discussions with community members over the next eight months.

"I will be seeking input from property owners, the planning board and the general public before making any decisions," Marks stated.

Marks previously told Patch that his downzoning plan aligns well with the goals of the , in February 2011, which he assisted in writing while serving as president of the .

Are you in support of preventing new housing developments from entering some areas of Perry Hall? Tell us in the comments.

The plan calls for the immediate downzoning of the following 72 acres:



Proposed Zoning Changes*

Undeveloped land west of near the Tremper Farms and Northgate Hall communities 37.1 From DR 5.5, DR 3.5 and DR 1, to all DR 1
Land north of and , between and , including the abandoned right-of-way for the section of that was never built. 11.7

From DR 5.5 to DR 1

Forested land west of the 12.3 From DR 10.5 to DR 1 Forested land west of the Cedarside Farms community 7.4 From DR 5.5 and DR 3.5 to DR 1 Land surrounding and including the on Meetinghouse Road 3.9 From DR 2 to DR 1

Additional downzoning of 209 acres, pending input from community members, includes:

AreaAcreageCurrent Zoning*
Large, relatively undeveloped region between East Joppa Road and north of Bowline Road 69.7 DR 5.5, DR 3.5H and BL** Land located northwest of and , a heavily forested property and one of the largest blocks of undeveloped land in Perry Hall 55.8 DR 5.5 and DR 3.5
Wooded property along Perry Hall Boulevard between and Silver Spring Road 41 DR 16, DR 10.5 and BM*** Undeveloped land near and the Red Fox Farms community 10.9 DR 5.5 and DR 3.5 Forested land north of on 8.7 DR 3.5 Undeveloped land north of and Silvage roads 7.2 DR 2 Undeveloped land north of Gunview Farm Court off 7.1 DR 2 Forested land east of the power lines and the on Joppa Road 6.3 DR 5.5 Undeveloped property south and west of 2.7 DR 5.5

*Density Residential (DR) zones 1-16 are defined by the number of dwelling units allowed per acre. Buildings may not be constructed more than 50 feet high in DR 1-10.5. Buildings may be constructed up to 60 feet high in DR 16.

**Business, Local (BL) zones allow for a wide variety of businesses, including retailers, personal services, banks, taverns, grocery stores and medical clinics.

***Business, Major (BM) zones allow for service garages, theaters and warehouses, in addition to businesses permitted in BL zones.

More detailed information on zoning designations is available on the Baltimore County website, the Quick View online database and the Citizen's Guide to Planning and Zoning.

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