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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Letters to the Editor

In response to Jan. 5 campground story  
Anyone who hears someone say a development will have “no runoff” should be extremely suspicious. Without denigrating Mr. Cropper’s credentials as the representative of the proposed site’s developers, there is no way any such development will not have runoff.
Even if it is into existing ponds, that water and the dissolved ingredients will impact the local waterways and aquifers. He can check with any Maryland farmer who has to regulate the type and amount of fertilizer placed on their fields no matter how far from a water body.
Next, keep in mind that the original zoning development plans for the property was E-1 or five or six mini-estate properties. If he believes that customers visiting and staying at over 300 campsites will have less impact than these estates, well, I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell him.
He should also note that the existing golf course has not been in use for over ten years and appears to have not harmed the environment while sitting there unused. In fact, he should also note that as a member of Lower Shore Land Trust there is an adjacent property set up for limited development that is doing quite well.
Has his developer thought of putting it under this type of positive environmental protection? It is an excellent program. Some may also question why no one uses the golf course. Wasn’t it profitable?
I should note that I have kayaked Ayers Creek for years, even going up the canals adjacent to the proposed development. It is a pristine environment with loads of wildlife. It is quite easy to put over on the causeway along Route 376 to kayak the Creek.
I ignored the “No Trespassing” sign they had on the wooden bridge over the canals. As Mr. Cropper knows, no one can be caught ‘trespassing’ on a public water body. I have seen bald eagles on some of my trips and numerous ducks on others.
I know it is Mr. Cropper’s job to paint a rosy picture of this proposed development. But surely he knows that the impact of over 300 campsites on the sewer infrastructure will be massive. And costly.
Does he expect local residents to willingly pay large sums of money to connect to this system no matter what? Surely he knows about the new Best Management Practices required for septic systems. If not, I can show him as I was required to put it in on my residential property. Just the huge numbers of people flushing into his proposed development will create a much greater impact on the environment than he seems to recognize.
Finally, regarding the safety issue, let me assure Mr. Cropper that Route 611 (and Castaways) is heavily used during the summer. But he would know that since he is proposing to put a profitable campground on that road. He knows customers will drive large caravans to and from his operation using 611 and adjacent roads. I can tell you from personal experience that the road is dangerous.
My accident last summer occurred across from Mystic Harbor entrance when someone unfamiliar with the road pulled out into 611. The county and state roads had not placed a white warning stripe in the side road for those unfamiliar with the road to know where to stop. It was just an accident but trust me, the traffic is very heavy on Route 611.
Regarding Mr. Cropper’s uncalled for comment that local residents are “just selfish,” I would only ask him one question. Why do he and his patrons want to put a large campground at this location? Could it be that they saw where Castaways and Frontier Town campgrounds were sold to a large out-of-state conglomerates for tens of millions of dollars? Are Mr. Cropper and his patrons being selfish? Don’t leave it as a park. Develop it as was called for a long time ago. Estates.
Tom Wieland