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7/18/2011
Clashing redevelopment ordinances get hearings - News Journal

Clashing redevelopment ordinances get hearings
Jul. 18, 2011    Written by ADAM TAYLOR News Journal 

Two competing ordinances designed to reform New Castle  County's controversial redevelopment law will get public airings before different government bodies today.

An ordinance sponsored by Councilman Robert Weiner will be reviewed by the county Planning Board at 9 a.m. at New Castle  County Government Center, 87 Reads Way.

At 3 p.m., County Council's Land Use Committee will discuss the ordinance sponsored by Councilmen Joe Reda and Dave Tackett. The meeting is on the eighth floor of the Louis L. Redding City-County Building, Eighth and French streets, Wilmington .

Planning Board Chairman Victor Singer has said he wants the council to take the best parts of each ordinance to solve the redevelopment dilemma. But Deputy County Attorney Wendy Danner said that's not likely to happen. Reda and Tackett's ordinance is a good one, she said. County Executive Paul Clark's administration worked with Reda and Tackett to craft  the improvements.

Getting redevelopment status allows builders to get waivers from expensive traffic-impact studies and impact fees. The anti-sprawl law was created to give developers incentives to knock down old buildings rather than embark on new-construction projects on farmland.

The law has recently drawn fire, largely because of two projects.

Redevelopment status, which was later withdrawn, was granted for the proposed Governor's Square III shopping center in Bear, even though there was only a small bank on the otherwise undeveloped land.

If the proposal for a 1.6-million-square-feet mixed-use site at Barley Mill Plaza goes forward, it will not be subject to a full-blown traffic study because it's a redevelopment project.

Contact Adam Taylor at 324-2787 or ataylor@delawareonline.com.

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