Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Maryland state and Harford County's BRAC planning documents now available online

Both the state's and Harford County's BRAC plans are now available online.

Here's a link to the state's BRAC plan. It's a doozy to download. The 334-page document took about 10 minutes to load with my broadband connection.

Here's a link to Harford County's
BPAC plan. That stands for BRAC Planning Advisory Commission Action Plan. It's a mere 28 pages.

I've been reading the two of them to try to determine if the county's plan seems to address the land use, traffic, school and water supply issues that are in the state's version. I'm still plugging along.

So far, what makes me the most nervous is the number of rather essential items in the county's plan that appear to be scheduled to be finished by 2015. That's four years after all the BRAC jobs planned for Aberdeen Proving Ground are scheduled to be in place.

Here are just a few of those items that aren't scheduled to be completed until 2015:

Land Use

  • Regional growth Projections - Quality of life /evaluation of community / human service needs
  • Study fiscal impact of new development and annexation on municipal governments.
  • Update vacant land inventories

  • Gain State recognition and funding of all identified projects and linkages
  • Siting of multi-modal site in coordination with APG and City of Aberdeen to ease congestion at MD 715 gate due to BRAC, Perryman access and GATE project to include parking and bus service (Ok, I don't exactly know what "multi-modal site coordination" means, but that whole easing congestion thing sounds like it's coming a little late.)
  • Identify funding sources available for these opportunities, such as Tax Increment financing (TIF) or private development (Did they say TAXES?)

  • Seek additional state funding for school construction and modernization

Public Safety
  • Establish adequate staffing plan to service the anticipated increase in population.

The report prefaces all this with the statement:
"The broad scope of the plan dictates that the status of actions addressed in it will be constantly changing, and for at least the near term the plan should be reviewed for update quarterly."

That leaves us four quarters before the first BRACers are expected to start arriving in 2008. Hope they pick up the planning pace.

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