Planned WOC Housing Community Clears County

SNOW HILL – A residential planned community (RPC) in West Ocean City will move forward following approval from county officials this week.

The Worcester County Commissioners on Tuesday approved an application for Shady Side Village Residential Planned Community. The project, proposed by property owner Kathleen Clark, will be located on Route 707 in West Ocean City.

According to county staff, Clark plans to build 36 duplex units and one single family residential home on the 4.82-acre site. Roughly two acres of the property will remain open space.

Ed Tudor, director of development review and permitting, stressed that this project was not on the property owned by Mark Odachowski. Odachowski recently shared plans to develop his land, which is located near Clark’s property, with vacation cottages.

“We’ve gotten a lot of phone calls in our office and a lot of confusion,” Tudor said. “This is not a hearing for Mark Odachowski’s proposed project in the area. It is not for seasonal cabins.”

Tudor went on to say that Clark was not requesting waivers to zoning requirements.

“It’s a project that’s allowed by right,” Tudor said, adding that the RPC floating zone would simply give the developer greater flexibility.

Zoning Administrator Jennifer Keener said the Worcester County Planning Commission reviewed the RPC application on Nov. 2, 2017, and had given it a favorable recommendation. She said commission members had looked at things like neighborhood compatibility, availability of public utilities and traffic, among other things.

“It will not have a negative impact on local traffic and transportation patterns,” she said.

Hugh Cropper, Clark’s attorney, told the commissioners that the nine EDUs (equivalent dwelling units) that would be needed to provide the project with sewer service had been accounted for. He said Clark would purchase two from the county and would transfer the other seven from other properties she owned.

He spoke in support of Clark’s plans and said the Shady Side Village project fit in with the county’s comprehensive plan as well as RPC guidelines.

“It’s a great project and as the staff report points out it is what was anticipated by both the comp plan, the RPC statute and the zoning for this property,” he said.

The commissioners voted unanimously to approve establishment of the RPC.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.