Donít wait for the land clearing equipment to show up before you discover your new neighbor will be a 300 house development. The best way to keep on top of whatís going on in your neighborhood is to give the Department of Planning & Zoning a phone call (410-638-3103) once a month and ask them if there are any new plans for your area. If there are new concept or development plans, ask for a copy. Friends of Harford can help you decipher the maps.
Know how your neighborhood is zoned. Planning & Zoning has maps of the County and large maps of specific areas. You may purchase a copy and learn what the zoning is in your neighborhood. If you are unsure what R3 or CI zoning allows for example, ask for the Countyís brochure explaining the different zoning categories.
Twice a year, the County Council is supposed to update the Water & Sewer Plan. This sets the schedule for construction of new water and/or sewer in several time frames, immediate or one year or more in the future. Public water and sewer should be confined to the Development Envelope. Review the newest plan. If the Council approved water and sewer in your area within the next year, most likely a new development is the cause.
The Transportation Plan for the County has just been revised this Spring. Copies are available at Planning & Zoning. In the back of the booklet is a list of roads and their designated usage and capacity. If your local road is listed, you should ask why. Most new developments must have access to urban or rural collector roads. Be informed. Be aware. Be curious. If you donít understand anything you read or hear, contact Friends of Harford. Weíll help.