Queenstown discusses annexation plans
QUEENSTOWN — At an open meeting of the Queenstown Town Commission held Wednesday, June 27, the top item was the annexation of property east of the town’s corporate boundary, north of U.S. Route 301.
The estimated 200 acres consists of two large sections with the larger of the two, along Cherry Lane, referred to as Dudley Home Farm. The smaller of the two parcels, along Salthouse Cove Lane, is referred to as Dudley North. The owners of the property, Salthouse LLC and Frank S. Dudley, Jr. Real Estate Trust, have estimated the size of Dudley Home Farm as 138.3 acres and Dudley North as 60 acres.
Plans to annex the property have dated back to 1997 with iterations again appearing in 2010 and most recently in 2017. Joe Stevens of Centreville, the attorney representing the Dudley family, presented Town Commission President Tom Willis and Commissioner Hogie Schuster, along with Town Manager Amy Moore and Town Attorney Brynja Booth with an overview of the property boundaries and current land use plans.
“We broke that property into two different entities because they are treated dif- ferently in the Queenstown Comprehensive Plan,” Stevens said. “Dudley North is currently zoned as suburban residential with a small sliver zoned as countryside. We propose no rezoning as part of this annexation. Dudley Home Farm was zoned as agriculture under the county and will remain that way under the annexation.”
Stevens said the long process to bring the land into the town’s jurisdiction had to be consistent with Queenstown’s plans for the property.
According to the Annexation Plan of Dudley North, the designation as “Planned Neighborhood” includes “approximately 130 residential units of a town-like mix of types and lot sizes including townhomes, live work units, duplexes, and single family homes. Also it includes 25,000 square feet of office and retail use.”
The Dudley Home Farm is slated for municipal growth elements to “allow for continued expansion of the town on the North side.”
Both parcels, along with all properties developed within the town limits, are to be served by a public water system to be operated by Queenstown.
The town presently serves about 670 people plus daytime commercial use through an estimated 272 occupied residences. Another 105 nonresidential allocations are served, including the site of the Queenstown Premium Outlets.
“The resolution and annexation plan were submitted to the Queen Anne’s County Planning Commission, the county commissioners of Queen Anne’s County, the Maryland Department of Planning and the Critical Area Commission all on May 16,” Booth said.
She also said Queenstown did not receive any comments by the county and the town did not receive any written comments for the record other than a letter from the Maryland Department of Planning, dated June 27, noting this property is not seeking any rezoning at this time. Any changes within five years, if substantially different, would require a waiver or expressed consent by county commissioners.
Dudley Home Farm, according to the Queen Anne’s County 2011 Comprehensive Water and Sewer Plan Update, identifies the property for public water service beyond 20 years from 2011from the Queenstown Water Service Area. Dudley North, according to the same comprehensive plan, is designated for public water service between the years 2014-2020.
The Queenstown Volunteer Fire Department will provide fire services and the planned development review process allows the opportunity to review longterm needs that may be necessary to the development of the property.
Lenny Anthony, who spoke on behalf of the Queenstown Volunteer Fire Department, offered an option for the use of the land by pointing out current issues with their location.
“Our next big project will be building a fire station because when we pull out, we’re halfway across the street,” Anthony said. “The fire trucks we order to house them there have to have to be designed to fit into the station. It’s just inadequate for the future needs of the community. So we’ve taken the opportunity to look at land around Queenstown. For safety reason, its not our desire to cross Routes 301 or 50. We would like to see if land could be set aside for [that project].”
Stevens said language to accommodate requests like those from the fire department would be included at the time the agreement would come to vote by the town commission. Commissioners also echoed Anthony’s sentiment that the land would be an optimal location, but that due diligence was yet to be completed before such proposals could be voted upon.
Peter Dudley, son of Frank Dudley, addressed his support for the town’s annexation plans.
“My father was a big supporter of the area and our interest is to continue that legacy and to work with the town to complete the vision that has continued to evolve since 1997. It just seemed like the right time work with the commissioners on the town’s controlled growth process,” Dudley said.
The vote on the full annexation proposal was tabled until the next town commissioners meeting when Town Commissioner Al Hardee could be present.
From left, Queenstown Town Commission President Tom Willis, Queenstown Town Commissioner Hogie Schuster and Brynja Booth, Queenstown town attorney, review the annexation plans for Dudley Home Farm and Dudley North at meeting held Wednesday, June 27.