Threats of Over Development, Smart Planning Solutions:
Over the next 25 years, Frederick County's population will grow by over 40%. Population growth is likely to bring positive changes to local communities including more jobs, greater home values, and a more robust local tax base. But, left unplanned, that growth could spell disaster for the health of Frederick County's lands, waterways, and drinking water sources.
Added development pressures can fuel destructive sprawl and lead to harmful land use practices that create excess paved surfaces to collect and carry pollution into local streams.
As Frederick County grows, the County Executive and County Council will be faced with important decisions that will impact communities' quality of life, access to safe drinking water, and the rural character that residents hold dear. The Frederick County Council and County Executive must implement smart planning to concentrate new development where infrastructure like roads and sewer lines already exist. Smart planning will save tax payer dollars and protect natural resources.
This is why public participation in Livable Frederick is so important!
Check out the Livable Frederick website and stay tuned here for more information.
Hear more from former Frederick County commissioner and Frederick County community leader, Kai Hagen, on threats of sprawl and pollution carried by runoff and sensible smart planning solutions to solve for them.
Frederick County, MD was profiled as one of the most endangered counties in Potomac River Watershed in Potomac Conservancy's 2014 State of the Nation's River Report. Read more about common sense solutions Frederick County should use to save local waterways and accommodate population growth.
At a glance: Over Development threats in Frederick County, MD
Whether you live on rural back roads in Thurmont or in a townhouse complex in Urbana, your community will be welcoming a new wave of people and businesses in the coming years.
Supporting growth and restoring local waterways in Frederick County are not mutually exclusive goals.
Smart planning strategies foster growth and ensure the responsible protection of forests, farmland, and waterways. Communities can avoid sprawl by planning clustered areas for mixed residential and commercial use, and protecting forested lands. Cost-effective tree plantings and rain garden installations improve local water quality and beautify our communities at the same time. With foresight, we can meet growth demands and leave a legacy of clean water for future generations.
Poorly planned development can put terrible pressure on our communities' infrastructure and natural resources. If we fail to enact common-sense solutions to manage our region's growth, unsustainable sprawl will lead to shrinking forests, weakened natural flood protections, and greater pollution levels in our local streams and rivers -- not to mention increased traffic, larger school classroom sizes, and higher cost of living.
Photo credits - Banner Image:
Monocacy River, C & O Canal - Frederick, Maryland, photograph © Dorothy Camagna
2014 State of the Nation's River Report, graphic © Potomac Conservancy
2014 State of the Nation's River Report, video © Potomac Conservancy
Suburban Sprawl, photograph, © Sarah Leen/National Geographic Creative