Livable Frederick Coalition Forms to Keep Livable Frederick Grounded in Original Principles
Livable Frederick Coalition to advocate for a plan that is in touch with the Livable Frederick Plan’s intended vision
FREDERICK, MD (May 25, 2022) – A group of Frederick County residents, farmers, landowners and business leaders announced today the formation of the Livable Frederick Coalition – a citizen group coming together to advocate for the fulfillment of the Livable Frederick Plan’s intended vision—including providing livable choices, economically vibrant and sustainable communities, enhanced accessibility, and a successful agricultural future.
The Livable Frederick Coalition is forming in opposition to the Frederick County Planning Commission’s draft of the Sugarloaf Treasured Landscape Management Plan. The coalition states the draft is out of step with, and unrepresentative of, the Livable Frederick Master Plan, and ignores critical concerns of meaningful stakeholders—including Stronghold, Inc., the longtime, nonprofit owner that has preserved Sugarloaf Mountain.
The Sugarloaf Treasured Landscape Management Plan is a long-range planning document that exists within the context of a broader planning initiative known as Livable Frederick. With the adoption of the Livable Frederick Master Plan in September 2019, Frederick County created a new framework for making strategic decisions about the county’s future.
“The version of the Sugarloaf area plan currently before the Frederick County Planning Commission does NOT reflect the key value of balancing economic interests with land preservation and conservation interests,” said Rick Weldon, President & CEO, Frederick County Chamber of Commerce and Spokesperson for the Livable Frederick Coalition. “It is both possible AND necessary to accomplish both goals, in fact that's a well-defined objective of the Livable Frederick Master Plan. The Planning staff and Commission should revise the plan to address unnecessary and unjustified restrictions placed on the Stronghold property as well as restoring commercial and employment zoning around the MD 80 and I270 interchange on the western side of 270.”
“Our membership understood that the Livable Frederick Master Plan would be the county's definitive guiding plan document,” said Danielle Adams, Executive Officer, Frederick County Building Industry Association and Spokesperson for the Livable Frederick Coalition. “It was a thoughtful process that took years and expertise of county leadership and staff, organizations, both for and not-profit associations, stakeholders, and citizens to formally determine how we grow in Frederick County. This first small area plan to go through the process is not in concert with the master plan.”
“FCAR would like to see the County provide full transparency to all property owners, regarding the changes that will occur to property use and valuation as a result of the proposed Sugarloaf Regional Plan, “said Hugh Gordon, Association Executive, Frederick County Association of Realtors and Spokesperson for the Livable Frederick Coalition. “The proposed changes exceed the intent of Livable Frederick as it was originally explained and approved. We do not think it is too much to expect that the County provide the same disclosure to all of the property owners that the law would require of real estate agents, in a real estate transaction located in the planning area.”
"Sugarloaf has served the public free of charge for more than 100 years, thanks to the foresight of Gordon Strong and his vision for the mountain. Yet, the Planning Commission, with its proposed Sugarloaf Treasured Landscape Management plan, is threatening our personal property rights and our ability to serve the public, which was so important to the development of Mr. Strong’s vision," said John Webster, President, Stronghold, Inc. "Naively, it was our thought and hope that the plan would optimize Stronghold's mission efforts now and in the future. Instead, the commission has shut us out, and every concerned resident, farmer, landowner and business in the area from the discussion."
Founding members of the coalition include:
Black Dog Farm - Fingerboard Road Properties
Be Creative; Bryant Livestock, LLC; Saddleview Ranch: Vicki Bazan, Jaclyn Bryant, Lynda Bryant
Frederick County Chamber of Commerce
Frederick County Building Industry Association
Frederick County Association of Realtors
Foul’s Play Farm: Andy Mackintosh
Greenbriar Veterinary Hospital and Luxury Pet Resort: Bill Amoroso
Highland Farm: Tom Mackinotsh
The High Road Foundation: Bob Eisinger
Twin Hills Farm, Nubb Farm, Roderick Farm: Natelli Holdings II
Parker Automotive: Dave Parker and Tammy Parker
Potomac Garden Center: David Angell
Suburban Maryland Transportation Alliance
About the Livable Frederick Coalition
The Livable Frederick Coalition is a group of Frederick County residents, farmers, landowners and business leaders committed to the fulfillment of the Livable Frederick Plan’s intended vision—including providing livable choices, economically vibrant and sustainable communities, enhanced accessibility, and a successful agricultural future.