Convenient | Connected | Community
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q: What exactly is being proposed for the Cromwell Property?
A: We are requesting approval of a Planned Development District Rezoning to Planned Unit Development (PUD). The subject property is planned for residential development and the request is to place the PUD overlay on the property for the purpose of proposing up to 600 active-adult, age-restricted dwellings. The initial concepts of the age-restricted community include a mix of single-family detached, attached villas and multi-family housing types. In addition, the plan proposes a +/- 4.0 acre public use site that would accommodate a regional library and senior center. Trail-oriented recreation and open space provide access to passive habitat areas, stream valley buffers, and active recreation amenities. The development of this property will also facilitate a portion of the completion of Lake Linganore Boulevard, a master-planned roadway connecting I-70/Meadow Road with Eaglehead Drive.
- Q: When will this all happen?
A: The property has to go through the PUD zoning process, which may last through 2019. Preliminary planning and site planning would occur in 2020, with final improvements, plans and site engineering in 2020-2021.
- Q: If I have an adjacent or nearby property, am I required to rezone my property too, at this time?
A: No, a Floating Zone Application, such as the Planned Unit Development (PUD) is an individual property owner decision and no adjacent or proximate properties are required to rezone their properties.
- Q: How will residents get to the Cromwell Community, at what locations are their road connections?
A: There will be a primary full-movement entrance into the Community from Lake Linganore Boulevard, currently planned as a roundabout and depicted on the concept plan. A secondary connection is planned along Lake Linganore Boulevard that will likely be a right-in/right-out access point. Lastly, there may also be a local road connection at a point furthest north along Meadow Road to limit the number of units that may be on a dead-end road network, which is a County Code issue. Each of these locations will be examined, reviewed and determined at the preliminary plan/site plan phase in the future, after the rezoning process.
- Q: Are you considering affordable housing options as part of the development?
A: Yes, the County regulations require a certain percentage (12.5%) of the total units in a development to either be constructed as affordable units or to pay a fee-in-lieu to a housing fund that the County manages to support affordable housing. The development team is exploring various allowable options including building some of those units on site.
- Q: How many stories will the multi-family be? Can we expect high-rise units here?
A: While everyone has a different definition of high-rise, generally the multi-family market in Frederick County does not support high-rise construction. What is currently contemplated is the more typical low/mid-rise multi-family in the form of 4-5 stories in height, similar to what is being built elsewhere in the County.
- Q: Are there any regulations regarding light and sound, particularly given the proximity to the high school?
A: The County has general noise and lighting standards to which each property owner must adhere. The County also has an enforceable noise ordinance. While a school may have increased levels of light and/or sound, it will be up to the individual buyer in Cromwell or any community to recognize the uses, both existing and planned, before buying.
- Q: Will there be one-level living options, particularly without basements?
A: While the actual builders have not been selected yet, and we are not at that stage of the plan, the active-adult lifestyle housing is centered around first-floor master bedrooms, with optional living spaces on additional floors. We plan to accommodate a variety of housing options, including single-level condo units. To the extent the market desires single-family without basements, that is a decision the builder may be able to make/provide.
- Q: Are there any additional fire stations planned in the vicinity, as this development will add to the existing responses of the current stations?
A: The Spring Ridge Fire Station is located approximately 1¼ mile from the site. The New Market Fire Station is approximately 3 miles to the east, and a planned fire station is proposed for north of Lake Linganore along Gas House Pike.
- Q: Are there any historic structures on the site?
A: The existing house on the Cromwell Farm was inventoried as part of F-5-18 by Frederick County as part of a Maryland Historic Sites Inventory effort but was not recommended by Maryland Historic Trust (MHT) for eligibility.
- Q: Does the County have restrictions or requirements relative to renewable energy and any waterways on-site?
A: The County does not have renewable energy regulations that would require a certain amount of solar or other type of renewable energy to be provided. These are individual decisions a homeowner would make on their respective property. The County does have programs to assist homeowners in those decisions through the Office of Sustainability. With respect to the waterways, the County does have stormwater management requirements, a waterbody-buffer requirement that limits development impacts along certain waterways, as well as a Forest Resource Ordinance to protect, maintain, and plan forest in certain conditions.
- Q: Will this new development be part of either the Lake Linganore PUD or the Oakdale Village MX property and their respective HOA’s as it directly abuts both?
A: No, this will be a separate entity with a separate HOA. The fees and dues structures will likely be different based on the level of amenities and programs that are offered for the age- restricted development. It is common for adjoining Communities and their HOA’s to have common areas that abut, and we have found, once established, the responsibilities to maintain their respective areas is worked out.
- Q: Will Meadow Road connect to Eaglehead Drive?
A: No, the developer has no plans to connect these roads; the topography is not favorable to do this in an appropriate manner, and it is not needed for any traffic capacity.
- Q: The traffic patterns around Meadow Road and I-70 and MD 144 remain an issue, what are the future plans and timing for any improvements?
A: The first phase of Meadow Road westbound on-ramp to I-70 is expected to be completed in Summer of 2019. The second phase is under design, and is expected to begin construction next year and be approximately 18 months of construction. Traffic signals are part of the initial design plans along this stretch and would be linked or synchronized in an effort to minimize delays.
- Q: What assurance can be provided that the community will be restricted to “active adults”?
A: If adopted by the Frederick County Council, County zoning procedures establish limits for uses through adoption of a legal binding ordinance for a property like Cromwell, which applies for residential under the age-restricted provisions of the Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO). Federal Housing Administration rules, under the Housing for Older Persons Act (HOPA), govern the County and other rules related to age-restricted housing. A declaration of covenants is required to be placed on the property, which would bind future users to abide by applicable rules. To remove the ordinance to allow anything other than age-restricted housing would require a new application go before the Frederick County Council to receive an affirmative vote.
- Q: Is age-restricted housing needed for the County? Is it good for the budget of the County?
A: A fiscal analysis was recently performed for the City of Frederick and Frederick County by Tischler Bise, which demonstrated that the typical age-restricted housing unit produces an estimated net positive fiscal benefit of $3,130 over expenditures related to this housing unit. An extrapolated amount of $1,878,000 per year of positive benefit to Frederick County could be realized at buildout of Cromwell. There are approximately 60,000 residents of Frederick County over the age of 55, while there are only approximately 5,000 housing units which can be considered senior housing, whether independent living or assisted or otherwise. Maryland, including Frederick County, has a fast-growing deficit of housing for our aging population.
- Q: Who are the applicants for the Cromwell?
A: Elm Street Communities (www.elmstreetdev.com), Founded in 1977, with offices in McLean, Ellicott City and Annapolis, has been active in Frederick for over 2 decades. Currently developing Eastchurch, Landsdale and Lake Linganore.
- Q: The DeLauter property was also presented at the Community Meeting, what is the background on that property and the request?
A: Delauter property has been in the same family for nearly a century and worked with the County to provide the land for Oakdale Middle and Elementary Schools as well as with the State Highway Administration to build I-70 through this area. While the property is currently zoned Office Research Industrial (ORI), the size of the buildable ground and its location is better served with the MXD overlay to allow for additional commercial and institutional uses on the property.
- Q: How long has this area been planned for growth?
A: This property was first identified for development in the 1972 General Plan, with the 1984 Comprehensive Plan a Neighborhood Center was also introduced. This was carried forward in the 1990 Countywide Plan update and continued to be refined and confirmed in the 1993, 2006 and 2008 Regional Plans, as well as the Comprehensive Plans in 2010 and 2012. The planned development of these properties have also been maintained in the current 2019 Comprehensive Planning effort, “Livable Frederick” which recently received a recommendation of approval from the Planning Commission.
- Q: How is this proposal consistent with Livable Frederick and the Comprehensive Planning Goals?
A: Development of the Project as proposed under the Concept Plan would result in the fulfillment of many of the County’s identified growth goals and policies contained in the Countywide Comprehensive Plan, including three specific issues and opportunities identified in the Countywide Comprehensive Plan for the Linganore Community Growth Area. Those issues and opportunities are:
- Q: What exactly is being proposed for the Cromwell Property?
- To support the build out of the Linganore PUD and the development of the Town Center to create a civic focal area for the Linganore community.
- How to facilitate improvements to the I-70/Meadow Road Interchange?
- To consider viability of MD 144/Old National Pike as an arterial connection and how to maintain its designation as the Historic National Scenic Byway.
This Plan proposes the build out of the Town Center as envisioned in the Countywide Comprehensive Plan. The proposal to include a public-use site for a potential library/senior center will serve as a civic focal point of the community. It draws upon the existing public uses and will benefit from the proposed active-adult community. The improvements to the I-70/Meadow Road Interchange will benefit from the additional funding sources from the proposed development. The viability of MD 144/Old National Pike will be enhanced with the completion of LTC Boulevard. LTC Boulevard will pull traffic off of the historic road and onto this master-planned road to access the regional road network via I-70. Further, the proposed PUD rezoning plan supports a number of goals and policies of the Comprehensive Plan that will be presented as part of the application.