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Planning Commission OK with park expansion

December 07, 2004|by BRIAN SHAPPELL

The Washington County Planning Commission showed little concern during its meeting Monday about a comprehensive expansion plan at Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts near Williamsport.

Park owner Ron Vitkun had requested Monday's preliminary consultation to make sure the commission did not have major objections to expansion to the site to include a water park and 485 new guest accommodations, said Senior Planner Steve Goodrich Sr.

Goodrich said the planned additions fit with the current agricultural zoning as well as the rural business designation planned in the future.

"We're being consistent between the old zoning and new zoning," Goodrich said.

Washington County Commissioner and Planning Commission member Jim Kercheval said the commission sees the business as beneficial to the community and is trying to make sure it will not be negatively affected by changes to be set forth in the county's Rural Rezoning Plan.

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"They're a very well-respected camp on the East Coast," Kercheval said. "We wanted to make sure they were well-protected."

Vitkun said at Monday's meeting that the entire project is expected to be completed in about 10 years and joked, "If gas gets up to $4 per gallon, we might not be building anything."

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