Plans for Ruby Tuesday Site Progressing

What is happening on the site of the former Ruby Tuesday restaurant? In mid-June social media chatter increased when two RV’s with camping-related gear and a large truck cab were observed parking overnight in the lot for several days. Combined with the minimal maintenance occurring on the property, it is not surprising that residents are concerned the site is becoming an eyesore. After doing some research, the community association discovered the RVs belonged to ID Plans Corp. This company was onsite as part of a detailed assessment of the village center being conducted at the request of Kimco Realty. The truck cab was unrelated. JPMorgan Chase Bank, the new owner of the former Ruby Tuesday site, is aware of the concerns and has indicated they plan to take measures to limit unauthorized access to the property and improve its appearance. Unlike with residential properties, Howard Hughes Corporation (HHC), not the village community association, has the responsibility for enforcing maintenance standards on the commercial properties in the village center. HHC is also aware of the community’s concerns.

Representatives from JPMorgan Chase Bank and Core States Inc., an architectural, engineering and construction firm, pre- sented their initial concept plan for constructing a Chase Bank at the association’s Board of Directors meeting on June 3. Their current plan is to locate the new branch building in the southwestern portion of the site, enabling the property to be resubdivided and the section containing the restaurant building to be sold or leased. At this time, it is unknown whether the restaurant building will be razed or repurposed.

The following process has been identified by the Department of Planning and Zoning (DPZ) to redevelop the site:

  • Pre-Submission Community Meeting.
  • Design Advisory Panel (DAP) Meeting. The Clarksville Pike Streetscape Plan and Design Guidelines will be used in conjunction with review by the DAP.
  • Environmental Concept Plan approval by DPZ.
  • Final Subdivision Plan approval by DPZ for re-subdividing the parcel into two lots. Resubdivisions do not require sketch or preliminary plan approval if no public road improvements are required and there is no additional area being included within the parcel.
  • Site Development Plan approval by DPZ.
  • Planning Board approval. Any adjustments or variances to the Final Development Plan (FDP) criteria is reviewed and approved by the Planning Board.

    In addition to the county process, HHC will also need to review and approve the architectural and landscaping plans. The River Hill Community Association anticipates the Pre-Submission Community Meeting will be held in mid-August. When the date and location become available, the meeting information will be publicized via the association’s various communications tools and signage on the property will be posted.

Village Board Seeks Additional Member

The River Hill Board of Directors appointed Dave Dalpe on May 13 to fill one of two open board positions. Mr. Dalpe’s term will end April 30, 2021. The association welcomes Mr. Dalpe and his family to the community. After renting in the village for a while, they recently purchased a home in the Pointers Run neighborhood and are excited to put their “roots down and get more involved in the community.” We look forward to working with Mr. Dalpe.

The Board of Directors is now seeking one more member to fill the remaining two-year term. Do you have ideas for improving the community association or enhancing life in the village? Do you have a special skill set that you want to share? Are you passionate about issues impacting the community? Do you find yourself with more time to volunteer? River Hill residents interested in working on behalf of the community are invited to apply by submitting a letter of interest by September 4. Applicants will be interviewed by the Board on September 13. Letters should be emailed to manager@villageofriverhill.org or sent to the Board of Directors c/o Village Manager at 6020 Daybreak Circle, Clarksville, MD 21029.

Bike Lanes Coming

Representatives from Howard County’s Office of Transportation (OOT) provided the association’s Board of Directors with a bike lane update on June 3. Per Chris Eatough, Bicycle & Pedestrian Coordinator, resurfacing of Summer Sunrise Drive is scheduled for this year in late summer or early fall. Because the resurfacing effort provides an opportunity to change roadway markings, the remarking will include bike lanes on either side of Summer Sunrise Drive from Great Star Drive to Velvet Path, in accordance with the adopted Howard County bicycle master plan. Adding bike lanes when roads that provide connectivity for people on bikes are resurfaced is a common practice for Howard County, as it is a low-cost way to improve safety by providing separate spaces for people driving cars and riding bikes.

Mr. Eatough assured the Board of Directors that a process to accommodate overflow parking for special events at the River Hill Pool will be provided. The OOT is currently coordinating with other county departments to finalize the details of this process. At all times, parking along Summer Sunrise Drive east of Velvet Path will be permitted.

Note: No changes to the existing parking regime will be implemented until after the 2019 swim season.

For more details, email transportation@howardcountymd.gov.

School Boundary Review Process Begins

The 2019 Feasibility Study was presented to the Board of Education on June 13, marking the beginning of a boundary review process that will conclude with the Board’s final decisions on November 21 for implementation in the 2020-2021 school year.

The Feasibility Study is a comprehensive look at the 10-year student enrollment projections for Howard County schools and presents possible options based on data and available capacity for boundary adjustments. The study is generated using the most currently available data, including population growth based on students yielded from sales of existing and projected new housing, and FARMs program participation.

According to this year’s study, continued growth across the county is expected at all levels over the next 10 years. Next year, 37 schools are projected to be outside the 90-110 percent utilization target defined by Board of Education policy, and according to this year’s study, continued growth is expected.

Also, at the Board of Education meeting, Cooperative Strategies, LLC, a school planning and demographic firm, presented their findings related to an evaluation conducted of the HCPSS enrollment projection methodology, confirming that the projections used to develop the Feasibility Study are within 99% accu- racy countywide.

The 2019 Feasibility Study will inform the boundary review process and serve as a starting point as the Superintendent devel- ops recommendations that he will give to the Board of Education on August 20. Feedback on the Feasibility Study to help inform the Superintendent’s recommendation and/or alternative bound- ary solutions can be submitted online at www.hcpss.org/school-planning/boundary-review/#online-input, available until August 1. Community members may also participate in one of four public input sessions scheduled in July (schedule below). The Board will hold several work sessions and public hearings prior to its decision on November 21.

Four community input sessions are scheduled to provide feedback for the Superintendent:
• Any family unable to attend their regional meeting, listed below, can attend the meeting on Saturday, July 13, 9–11 a.m. at Long Reach High School.

  • Families currently zoned for Centennial HS, Howard HS, Mt. Hebron HS, Oakland Mills HS: Wednesday, July 10, 7–9 p.m. at Oakland Mills High School.
  • Families currently zoned for Atholton HS, Hammond HS, Long Reach HS, Wilde Lake HS:  Tuesday, July 16, 7–9 p.m. at Atholton High School.
  • Families currently zoned for Glenelg HS, Marriotts Ridge HS, Reservoir HS, River Hill HS: Thursday, July 18, 7–9 p.m. at River Hill High School.

    Those who can attend neither their region’s session nor the county-wide July 13 session may attend one of the other regional sessions. While RSVP is not required, it is highly encouraged. Information on RSVPs for the community sessions was not available as of press time for this issue of The Villager. It will be available soon at www.hcpss.org. Families are asked to only attend one session.