Montgomery County Plan Commission Amends, Approves Thoroughfare Plan

Sep 25, 2019

The commission voted unanimously to remove two proposed road extensions before passing the plan.
Credit Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

Proposals to extend local roads came under fire at a Montgomery County Plan Commission meeting Wednesday evening. Residents voiced concern over eminent domain, safety and other infrastructure needs as the commission considered a drafted thoroughfare plan.

The plan includes several areas for improvements or changes, including some new roads that would add more connections to existing ones.

Many meeting attendees voiced opposition to those, saying the money used to build them could be spent improving current infrastructure.

In particular, an extension of County Road 650 North received pushback, as it would require dividing private property. Resident Julie Bullerdick lives where a draft map places the extension, and addressed county commissioner John Frey about the county’s pursuit of it last year.

“You said this would be $12 million of our tax money back in the community’s pockets. You did not care what it was doing to our family farm. This has been devastating to us,” Bullerdick said.

HWC Engineering architect Kyle Lueken emphasized the thoroughfare plan is not a plan to build roads, but rather a set of recommendations. He says any new roads would still need a feasibility study, funding and additional county approval, and that would include considerations of terrain and resident safety.

“Those detailed studies that help determine, feasibility studies, does this road actually make sense, is when a lot of those considerations are taken into play,” Lueken says.

Even so, the commission voted to remove extensions for both 650 North and 100 East from the plan due to the public outcry. They then unanimously passed the amended plan.

The plan now goes to county commissioners for approval. If passed, it will be added to the comprehensive plan.