The state conducted a Preliminary Land Use Service review Feb. 23 on Rehoboth Beach’s 2020 Comprehensive Development Plan, and while there were a couple of small suggestions, officials were positive about the document.
Dorothy Morris represented the Office of State Planning Coordination. There’s still a need for comments from the county and local municipalities, but overall it’s a great plan, said Morris.
“I know how much effort has gone into this document, and when you read it, you can really see it,” said Morris.
Officials from the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Delaware Department of Transportation and Delaware State Fire Marshal had little to say other than the document looks to be in good shape and they would have final comments submitted.
“It looks really good,” said DNREC’s Clare Quinlan.
Carlton Hall, representing the Division of Historical & Cultural Affairs, was the only state employee to make any suggestions. He said he would like the city to get more specific on preservation issues, make a new architectural design manual and come up with a historic district.
A number of city officials listened in on the review, which took about 20 minutes – City Manager Sharon Lynn, Commissioner Patrick Gossett, Planning Director Tom West, Planning Commission Chair Mike Bryan, and Planning Commissioners Jim Ellison and Nan Hunter.
Lauren Good, project manager for the city’s contractor Wallace Montgomery, was also on hand and did the talking for the city. It took longer than expected to get to this point, she said, but there’s a lot of public input and it builds on the 2010 plan.
Good said the draft CDP had been circulated to the surrounding governments and responses were beginning to trickle in.
Moving forward, Morris said the different state agencies have until Friday, March 4, to get their comments submitted to her. The state’s full response will be sent to the city on or before Wednesday, March 23.
So long as the document meets requirements, Morris said, the city is not required to make any changes based on the comments. However, she added, the city should note where changes are made if it chooses to make any because of those comments.
Planning commission hosted public comment session Feb. 17
In advance of the PLUS review, the planning commission conducted a public hearing Feb. 17 to solicit any comments that might be relevant to the document moving forward.
Two former members of the planning commission – Joyce Lussier and Jeff Trunzo – congratulated the current commission members for getting the document done. Trunzo added that the portion of Chapter 3 talking about increased coordination among city staff, city commissioners, and the city’s boards and committees was critical.
Resident Wyn Achenbaum said she had lots of nits to pick, but overall she has been impressed with the group’s ongoing conversation.