Removing the funding for the Cross County Connector – More than just stopping a road we don’t need

Chapter 8 – Back in February, the Board of Commissioners (BOC) requested a delay in forwarding the draft comprehensive plan to the state for its review. It was clear that the BOC had issues with some aspects of the plan and how it would impact the future of Charles County.

One would expect our elected policymakers to receive some respect from appointees and employees alike, but neither the Planning Commission nor the Planning and Growth Management (PGM) staff gave the request much more than a passing glance.

The development lobby's plan for a Cross-County Connector would destroy the Mattawoman Creek.

The development lobby’s plan to build a Cross County Connector would destroy the Mattawoman Creek.

Nevertheless, it looks like the future of the Cross County Connector (CCC) and the village of Bryans Road are important to the BOC. Both were mentioned publicly during the discussion leading up to the request for the comprehensive plan delay and now the BOC has removed CCC funding from the county’s budget.

The development lobby’s “pave it all over” gang of land speculators, realtors and business “leaders” immediately cried that the CCC is vital to countering gridlock on dangerous roads. However, if you read the October 23, 2001 Bryans Road – Indian Head Sub-Area Plan, you see that the real purpose of the CCC was to facilitate sprawl development between Waldorf and a future Bryans Road urban center. If anything, the CCC would have INCREASED gridlock as it spawned more sprawling development. It was never about safety.

The CCC and the development lobby’s self-serving obsession with turning Bryans Road into an urban center are inseparable. Without the CCC, Bryans Road has to stay a village and both the sub-area plan and the draft comprehensive plan must be revised accordingly.

With one vote, the Board of Commissioners have cancelled funding for a road we don’t need, helped maintain the village of Bryans Road, and strengthened our quest for transit to serve a revitalized Waldorf while reducing development threats to the environment. This is leadership at its very best.

Read more from our ongoing series, “Charles County’s Comprehensive Plan fiasco.”