Calvert Staff Present Issue Paper on Preserving Rural Character
For its fourth workshop, the county staff and consultant will be focusing on preserving rural character. The workshop will be held Thursday, April 20, Building B, Workshop 6:30-8:30 p.m. and it entitled “Preserving Rural Character and Directing Growth to Existing Population Centers”.
The title is significant. In too many rural counties, the “rural” part is lost if commercial and residential growth is allowed to be spread through the county. When that happens, everyone loses. Rural roads get congested, the rural economy is lost, the logical growth centers (where infrastructure is or can be developed) become too fragmented and empty to serve as interesting places to “live, work, and shop”.
Rural Economies, such as farming, forestry, and fisheries, went through a long decline in the 20th century and economic development specialists forgot about how important these industries can be. In the 21st century, the local food movement has rekindled local agriculture. Recovering water quality, improved fisheries management, and local sales have revived the oyster industry and reinforced sales of crabs and fish.
In addition, rural land owners have discovered how much suburban and urban dwellers are drawn to forest trails, the water, and authentic historic, agriculture and fisheries experiences.
County residents are encouraged to review the issue paper and attend the workshop. The organizations that form the Sustainable Calvert Network couldn’t agree more. Come attend and let your thoughts be heard. The map to the right is very important. Are the Priority Preservation Areas too large? Too small? What about all the spaces in between? You be the judge.