Prince Frederick Town Center News

Significant Cost Increases Are Likely from

The Proposed Expansion of Prince Frederick

 

Prepared by KCC March 29, 2022

 

Planning and Zoning’s (P&Z) proposed expansion of Prince Frederick’s town center raises serious questions about its impact on the health and welfare of Calvert’s residents. Up to 10,024 new residences could strain county services and significantly increase budget costs.

 

P&Z’s failure to provide studies recommended by professional planners prevents Calvert officials and residents from assessing the full impact of this proposed growth. This expansion is likely to create major problems for residents in traffic congestion, sewerage processing, water availability, school capacity, the environment, and county services.

 

Addressing these problems after expansion is completed could cumulatively add more than $510,000,000 incrementally to future county budgets through 2040. Without prior assessments of potential problems, the resulting cost increases will appear only after proposed construction is completed. Failure to identify problems before Calvert officials approve expansion would eliminate the possibility of developers absorbing them. Instead, taxpayers would need to pay all the costs of correcting foreseeable problems.        

At a time when county officials are struggling to reduce inflation-driven costs of a few tens of millions of dollars for the new County Administrative Building, they need to also assess whether the county can afford the likely high costs of expansion. They must have staff conduct studies recommended by Adequate Public Facilities Ordinances guidelines and professional planners so they can make informed decisions of the impact of proposed growth on Calvert residents including traffic gridlock, failing wastewater treatment, overcrowded schools, and inadequate water supply before they affect county residents.  

 

Keep Calvert Country (KCC), a group of Calvert citizens concerned about the quality of life in the county, has researched federal, state, and professional planning guidelines as well as county budgets and plans to identify costs that the county is likely to incur from this proposal. As a result of its research, KCC strongly recommends that Calvert officials:

  1. Update APFO before they approve any town center expansion proposal.

  2. Not approve the P&Z proposed expansion of Prince Frederick until they are provided the studies necessary to make informed decisions.

  3. Direct P&Z to prepare the studies recommended by professional planners and use recognized methodologies in assessing traffic, wastewater treatment, school capacity, environmental impact, water availability, and county services.

  4. Revise planning documents through 2040 to allow reasonable growth in conformity with state planning levels and limit new building permits to those levels.