Glade Valley Government 

Planning Commission Meeting

The Town of Walkersville’s Planning Commission will hold its monthly meeting on Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. in Walkersville’s Town Hall.

Agenda items include:

  • Site Plan for the Walkersville Water Treatment Plant
  • Concept Plan for the Rutter’s Store and Gas Station at the intersection of Glade Boulevard and Woodsboro Pike
  • Site Plan for Temporary Structures at Lonza on Biggs Ford Road

The Rutter’s Concept Plan has appeared before the Planning Commission twice previously. Rutter’s proposes a convenience store at the former Exxon gas station. The existing building, the site of vandalism and blight, will be torn down as part of the development. In its place, Rutter’s will build a 7,450 square foot store. A road will connect Sandstone Drive to the signalized intersection of Glade Boulevard and Maryland 194. Across the road, fourteen fuel pumps will be built; four of the pumps will be diesel truck pumps. Rutter’s plans for a late 2017 opening of their facility.

Traffic plans include:

  1. extension of the turn lane into the property to 100 feet for the left turn into the property;
  2. closing the right only entrance to the property;
  3. extending the deceleration right turn lane into the site;
  4. Mills Custom Wood Floors

  5. Restriping turn lanes;
  6. Upgrading the traffic signals to accommodate the site driveway/roadway and pedestrian needs;
  7. Provide signage directing trucks to use Sandstone Drive to enter the property and reach diesel pumps;
  8. Widen corner radii at the Sandstone Drive and Woodsboro Pike intersection “to accommodate the large combination truck turns that will use the Sandstone Drive proposed Rutter’s right turn in only driveway accessing the diesel pump area.”

In February and March, members of the Planning Commission raised concerns with traffic impacts. Rutter’s plans to have trucks enter the property from Sandstone Drive at an entrance just past the existing Circle K entrance for diesel pumps. Several members opposed directing trucks to use Sandstone Drive as it is a busy entrance to a residential area. Rutter’s pointed to the traffic of Circle K, but that gas station does not offer fuel for trucks.

Another entrance on Sandstone Drive would be a private road allowing traffic to flow from Sandstone to the traffic light at Glade Boulevard. This private road would bisect the property. Fuel pumps would be west of the road, and the store to the east of the road. The Town of Walkersville has long sought to direct traffic to the signaled intersection of Glade Boulevard and Woodsboro Pike for safety reasons. Planning Commission members raised concerns with this. Rutters proposed traffic calming measures on the site including rumble strips to mark the edges of the “road.”

The Maryland Department of Transportation reviewed the traffic plans for Rutter’s. They encouraged moving traffic to the signalized intersection. They also expressed concern about the road stating, “this unusual site layout could present challenges for pedestrians who park at the fuel pumps and want to cross the new roadway while accessing the convenience store.”

Rutter’s also requests a variance to the Town’s required set-back for the front yard of the property. The town requires buildings and parking spaces be set-back from the property line and the road. The plans submitted put a row of parking spaces too close to the property line.

Commission member David Ennis and the town’s engineer raised concerns about the set-back of underground fuel tanks. Rutter’s explained that the one tank is for emissions and does not contain fuel. The Town of Walkersville requires tanks to be kept fifty feet from the property lines.

During the March meeting, Mr. Steve Stolz of Heritage Court told the Planning Commission that the store and gas station comes too close to his property. He and his family complained that the old Exxon station caused air and noise pollution when it operated at the location. The Exxon closed at 9 p.m. each night. The proposed Rutter’s operates twenty-four hours a day. Mr. Stolz fears the Rutter’s will adversely affect his family and property. The response from Rutter’s representatives were that the lighting is reduced at night to only light the Rutters logo and Commission members suggested they put up a fence between the two properties.

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