- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Would allow future development to connect to Calvert’s infrastructure
By AMANDA SCOTT
The county is moving forward with plans to acquire a Lusby shopping center’s private sewer system to allow future development to connect to the county’s sewer system through the private infrastructure.
A sewer category amendment that would change the designation of 235 Town Square Drive, Lusby, from a category planned for sewer in the next six to 10 years to a category that would permit sewer hookup is being sent to a public hearing. Changing the designation of the property would allow for connection to the county-owned sewer system if an agreement is reached between the county and the owners of the private sewer system, Lusby Town Square Shopping Center.
On Tuesday, the Calvert County Board of County Commissioners discussed the sewer category amendment and unanimously approved to direct staff to send it to the Calvert County Planning Commission for review for consistency with the Calvert County Comprehensive Plan so it can be sent to a public hearing. On Wednesday night, the planning commission reviewed the amendment, found it consistent with the comprehensive plan and unanimously approved to recommend the BOCC approve the amendment. Planning commission member Bill Glascock was not present.
“This is what we had hoped for when we saw this site plan,” Planning Commission Chairman Maurice Lusby said. “This just makes a tremendous amount of sense, and I personally hope that everything down there ends up on the sewer. We know that that is the preferred method, and, certainly, they can’t expect to have a problem on the town sewer such as they might incur on private.”
Earlier this year, the owners of 235 Town Square Drive submitted subdivision and site plan concepts to the Department of Community Planning and Building for review. Those plans included the business development on a septic system because it seemed unfeasible to connect to the county’s sewer system.
The planning commission expressed concerns about the business being served by a septic system and indicated it would prefer to see the business served by sewer. The commission stated it also was concerned about the property owners being able to obtain the necessary wet season percolation test for a septic system.
However, during staff’s investigation and planning commission discussion, it was discovered that the Lusby Town Square Shopping Center has a private sewer system connected to the county’s system.
Contact with the shopping center owners indicated a willingness to explore the possibility of turning this private system over to the county and allowing 235 Town Square Drive to connect to the county’s sewer through this infrastructure, said Pat Haddon, a county principal planner.
This would prevent the owners from developing the property on “an interim basis with a septic system and the expense of having to connect to sewer at a later time,” according to a staff memo.
During the BOCC’s discussion on the amendment, Commissioner Susan Shaw (R) said, “I love it when staff’s proactive.”
Haddon told the planning commission there are “other pockets” of properties throughout the Lusby Town Center that are planned for sewer in the next six to 10 years, “which also bear looking at in the future, and we intend to go back and take a look at those to see if they should” be permitted to connect to sewer, as well.