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New zoning changes in affect

Some homeowners in Maryland might benefit from learning more about how recent zoning changes may affect those involved in retirement or recreation. Two amendments to the Solomons Town Center and Calvert County zoning ordinances were approved on July 15. One amendment under consideration calls for adding the Employment Center to places that allow indoor commercial recreational facilities. The amendment allowing indoor recreational facilities in the EC is to be conditional. Indoor recreational facilities were previously designated to the Rural Commercial District, and with special permission, the Town Center zoning subareas as well.

Two county commissioners vocally opposed the initial proposition for allowing a special exception for including the Light Industrial District. One commissioner stated he had no issues with the commercial recreational facilities being in the EC zone, but noted that these businesses may serve best when located in the Town Center. The other commissioner expressed concern about the potential dangers of having children's recreational facilities located in close proximity to landfills and other industrial sites.

The person who requested the zoning change did not attend the meeting, and no comments from the public were made on the matter. Commissioners voted in favor of recommending the amendment, while opting to delete the Light Industrial inclusion. One commissioner opposed the deletion, noting that many dance and martial arts teachers are only able to afford rent in zoning areas that are less expensive; the final vote was 4-to-1.

in addition, Asbury Solomons requested modifications to use and conditions for continuing care retirement communities in the county that can help bring them into compliance with the state legislature's legal definitions. Business owners and local residents who have issues with land use or city zoning ordinances typically benefit from consulting legal counsel before making any final decisions on what course of action is best.

Source: The Bay Net, "Zoning changes will affect recreation and retirement", Marty Madden, July 18, 2014

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