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Panel fails to pass building plans

Jefferson County, W.Va., planners rejected plans for the Windmill Crossing subdivision for the second time.

Jefferson County, W.Va., planners rejected plans for the Windmill Crossing subdivision for the second time.

December 12, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Jefferson County planners Tuesday night rejected for a second time preliminary plans for a controversial housing and commercial development along U.S. 340 at Marlow Road east of Charles Town.

A community impact statement for the proposed Windmill Crossing subdivision failed after Jefferson County Planning Commission members deadlocked 5-5 on the plan, said President Arnie Dailey.

There was no one to break the tie vote since only 10 commissioners were present, Dailey said.

The planning commission's vote on a subdivision's community impact statement is designed to give the builder the commission's "informal disposition" toward the developer's project. The community impact statement is reviewed in the early phase of a development before the builder has put a lot of money into services like surveying and engineering studies.

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Another community impact statement can be filed on the Windmill Crossing development, Dailey said.

In a commission meeting in September, residents from nearby Schaeffer's Crossroads subdivision complained that the Windmill Crossing development is not compatible with the area since Windmill Crossing would have about 12 living units per acre.

Schaeffer's Crossroads has about one home per acre.

Since then, the density of Windmill Crossing has been reduced, Dailey said.

Developer Christopher Shultz had planned to build 170 townhouses at the site, but he had trimmed that down to about 130 townhouses, Dailey said.

Shultz also wants to have 60 condominium units and 14 commercial lots at the location, which encompasses 37 acres.

Despite the reduced density, some commissioners had concerns over buffers for the development and ample recreation space, Dailey said.

The project was one of three parcels that were recently being considered for annexation into the city of Charles Town.

All three annexations were later withdrawn after some city residents expressed concern about tax increases and other potential problems due to possible annexations in town.

The community impact statement for Windmill Crossing failed during a marathon planning commission meeting Tuesday night, Dailey said.

The meeting did not end until 2:04 a.m. Wednesday, ending a little more than seven hours of deliberations on different projects, Dailey said.

The planning commission also rejected a community impact statement for Potomac Crossing at Shepherdstown, W.Va., a 36- unit townhouse development being proposed along W.Va. 230 at the intersection with Bon Aire Drive.

The planning commission rejected the plans after some people spoke against it, Dailey said.

The development would be built on 13 acres.

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