Pay heed when the General Land Use Map changes

In its April 18 email feed, Envision Hanover announced that the application period is now open for landowners to request land use changes for their properties. Deadline to submit applications is 5:00 p.m. Friday, June 17, 2022.

Such requests, if granted, would then trigger changes in the General Land Use Plan Map, the tool which delineates (with various colors) such uses as residential, commercial, industrial and their various sub categories. 

 See the map at this site: General Land Use Plan

Included in the email: “All applications will be reviewed by the Community Participation Team (CPT), Planning Commission, and the Board of Supervisors to determine whether the requested changes should be reflected in the updated General Land Use Plan.”  

Citizens, pay heed.

The pros and cons of land use changes —large or small — need to be thoroughly considered by citizens, Planning Commissioners and Supervisors.  How will changes affect traffic, roads, suburban development, forests, farmlands, open space, and, indeed, quality of life? A map change decision is no insignificant matter.

A seemingly small change can precipitate an avalanche. Then development pressure builds, putting citizens in the path of a juggernaut and a decision they might not actually have envisioned. 

The County’s fallback position is this: a property owner is not compelled to rezone his property and can continue to enjoy its use. True enough. But here’s another truth: death by a thousand cuts changes the landscape permanently.

The Envision Hanover email concludes with this entreaty: “Be on the lookout for future opportunities to provide feedback regarding the General Land Use Plan and land use throughout the County.”

We couldn’t agree more.

Sign up to receive information on the Comp Plan update process:

Voice your concerns. The citizen voice matters.


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