Queenstown plan altered to include Wheatlands
QUEENSTOWN — The Queenstown Town Commissioners have unanimously approved a resolution to amend the town’s 2010 Community Plan “to reflect the annexation, rezoning, and future development” of the Wheatlands property.
At their meeting on July 13, the commissioners adopted Resolution 16-103 on the recommendation of the town planning commission, which determined that the community plan should be updated with development of the Wheatlands property pending.
Wheatlands is a 148-acre tract of land near the Route 50-Route 301 split owned by the Waterman Family Limited Partnership that was annexed into Queenstown in September 2014. Barry Waterman stated earlier there is a potential development area of about 75 acres in the middle of the property with a 300foot buffer providing a “virtually impenetrable visual screen” for people living across the Wye River from Wheatlands.
Waterman was the only person who testified at a public hearing prior to passage of the resolution.
“It’s been suggested that making changes to the [comprehensive] plan are inappropriate. It’s, in fact, under the Maryland land use article, municipalities and counties’ obligation to update their comp plan on a regular basis,” Waterman testified. “You’re privileged to update the comp plan whenever there’s a significant change that warrants it.”
He said the recommendations of the planning commission “make a lot of sense and they’re appropriate.”
The town received two letters in opposition to the resolution, one from Ed Modell who lives in the Hickory Ridge community across the Wye River from Wheatlands, and one from Queen Anne’s Conservation Association.
Conservation Association Executive Director Jay Falstad said the organization is opposed to the Wheatlands project and also wrote on behalf of Queenstown resident Kathleen Boomer and Hickory Ridge residents Stacy L. Swartwood, Marie J. McNurlan, and Paul A. McNurlan, “whose properties abut or are in close proximity to Wheatlands.”
Modell wrote that his property, which he said is “directly across the very narrow headwaters of the Wye River will be directly and negatively impacted” by the development of the Wheatlands project.
Plans for the property call only for commercial development and no residential development.
The Waterman interests presented to the town last November a concept plan for the site and emphasized that it only shows what might fit on the property and is not considered to be the final word on the layout. Waterman said the partnership does not yet have any tenants for the property.
This concept plan for the Wheatlands property was presented to the Queenstown town commissioners by the Waterman Family Limited Partnership to give an idea how the land might be used. It is not a final plan.