Towns such as St. Michaels must carefully balance the essence of a small tourist town with respect for residents and private enterprise. As they are interconnected, all aspects must be considered in decision making.
The town’s tourist industry continues to grow. The primary reasons for this are the recreational offerings and the look of this small, historical gem. The proposal for the development of the property American Corners does not, in any way, benefit the greater good.
It will be an eyesore at the primary gateway of the town. It will turn a beautiful entrance to the Nature Trail into a large commercial view.
It will create a dangerous situation as the location is just across an already busy Talbot St. to the YMCA, the community pool, and, most importantly, the children who attend our schools. A number of these children walk and will be put in jeopardy’s way as they traverse an increased busy junction. As town residents will note, school dismissal is well-regulated as it now exists but it does cause unavoidable traffic back-ups which will become worse with the traffic increase.
I am unfamiliar with the environmental impact study but assume one was done. This cannot be a good location for additional gasoline and oil tanks against the wetlands. As one who enjoys the beauty and serenity of the Nature Trail, it is obvious that this proposal would also negatively impact the wildlife who live there.
We don’t need this large commercial development. The community is adequately served by the two gas stations at the edge of town. What will happen should the enterprise fail? We will be left with the damage done to this area. Such a development should be placed farther from the center of town.
While we have codes and other regulations, I question if they are fully developed in order to deal with such a proposal. The final question must be what is best for the quality of life in the town.