Sussex P&Z implored to deny RV park

February 8, 2013

The following letter was sent to Robert Wheatley, chairman of the Sussex County Planning and Zoning Commission, with a copy submitted to the Cape Gazette for publication.

It has been some time since I have made any comments to the Sussex County Planning & Zoning Commission; however the recent application for a huge campground facility on Ward Road is a cause for concern.

This application is seriously misplaced for many reasons. As planners you must look at the cumulative impact it will generate. First consideration is the intersection at Plantation and Cedar Grove roads. It is unsafe and is due to be realigned with Postal Lane. When will this take place? When another fatality occurs? Second, Cedar Grove road is narrow and at night dangerous. At my request some time back fog lines were painted on the edges of the road, slightly improving visibility of the road at night. Third, farmers still run equipment on this road and increased traffic will be a continued affront to their activity and livelihood.

Now let’s address another cumulative concern - the need to protect Love Creek. Citizens Coalition was among many who opposed the development of the Retreat at Love Creek because of a serious loss of woodland and habitat. Randall Arendt, author of “Designing Open Space Developments in Sussex County, Delaware” provided the developer with what we believes was a better design pro bono which would have saved the woods and placed the storm water pond to the rear of the site. This design was refused and considerable acres of woodland habitat were destroyed. My point is that this campground development is a further affront to the environment and to Love Creek. Such a loss can’t be replaced.

Finally, you should not accept a Conditional Use for this application. Here is your ordinance:

"The purpose of this article is to provide for certain uses which cannot be well adjusted to their environment in particular locations with full protection offered to surrounding properties by rigid application of the district regulations. These uses are generally of a public or semipublic character and are essential and desirable for the general convenience and welfare but, because of the nature of the use, the importance of the relationship to the Comprehensive Plan and possible impact not only on neighboring properties but on a large section of the county, require the exercise of planning judgment on location and site plan."

Just how is this application essential? How does it benefit surrounding properties and its neighbors? As a cyclist who uses this road nearly every day during the spring, summer and early fall months, I believe this will be a further loss of a safe cycling venue because truck/trailer traffic and unsafe road conditions will result. This site does not need to be developed by these uncaring developers whose greed and not community need will be served.

Michael R. Tyler

  • A letter to the editor expresses a reader's opinion and, as such, is not reflective of the editorial opinions of this newspaper.

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