The SSARPC supports development in the Sandy Spring-Ashton area as it conforms to the Master Plan. We are pro-Master Plan, not anti-development.
SSARPC CONSISTS OF PEOPLE who live in the Sandy Spring-Ashton area and who want to see the area remain rural. The Sandy Spring-Ashton Master Plan supports this rural concept and is our guide in assuring that this character is maintained. The Committee brings together people from different professions, including an architect, a landscape architect, educators, civic leaders and people with technical expertise. Most of all, the members are energetically dedicated to ensuring that future developments recognize the need to remain rural and conform to the Master Plan.
The Committee hired some experts residing outside the area to provide education and support for their efforts. These included a land use lawyer and a town planner, both who provided their services at greatly reduced rates. However, we still need to use a large portion of the donations we receive to pay these professionals.
Please Let the County Council know your thoughts!
After two years of community meetings with the Planning Board staff, and hearing over and over that they were concerned with preserving the rural character of Ashton, the Planning Board has sent a zoning change proposal to the County Council which will allow the 9-acre property at the corner of New Hampshire Avenue and Route 108 (now home of the Sandy Spring Bank Ashton Branch) to be filled with 4-story buildings and parking lots. The bank building will be torn down, but the illustration shows a comparison with what is in Ashton now, with what may be allowed soon. The zoning proposal would allow over 150 units and the cars that go with them, since this location is not served reliably by any public transportation.
If you don't think that sounds like a rural village, please let them know today!
Please hurry! The public hearing is on March 2!
Send the County Council an email here:
Sign up to testify here:
We don't have much time! The Planning Board has recently
On the right is an actual sample submitted by the developer for just one of the townhouses, stacked flats and apartments he wants to build on the Sandy Spring bank property in Ashton. The plan allows for over 164 dwelling units. Please do not let this happen!
IT'S HARD TO FIGHT CITY HALL Among many other things, it takes time, persistence and money. Chances are, in the months ahead, our organization will need to hire a lawyer to wrestle with all the details. Pictured below are two possibilities already on the drawing board just waiting for the go-ahead from the Planning Board. The real problem here is that while SOME of the elements of the design are attractive—and we ARE in favor of many of them—we have yet to see what the developer has in mind. His lawyer is requesting a .75 FAR (Floor Area Ratio) which could mean as many as 240 dwelling units! . . . accompanied by a rough estimate of 500 more cars on roads already choked with traffic . . . just from this one site!
IF WE DO NOTHING, COMPLAINING WILL BE ALL WE HAVE LEFT!
Here are two proposals that the Planning Staff came up with. The farthest one has a FAR of .44 which allows for 67 homes. The closer one has a FAR of .50 which would allow for 159 homes. If the developer gets a .75 FAR, he could potentially build 240 new homes.
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Make checks payable to: SSARPC
c/o Elizabeth Thornton
Ashton, MD 20861