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New Overbrook Town Center hearing set Feb. 27 Court order requires Sussex council to vote again on rezoning By Ron MacArthur

Date: January 24, 2018

As ordered by Chancery Court, Sussex County Council has scheduled a new public hearing for a rezoning application that could make way for the proposed Overbrook Town Center, an 850,000-square-foot shopping center along Route 1 at the Cave Neck Road intersection north of Lewes.

The hearing is scheduled for 10:15 a.m., Tuesday, Feb. 27, in the county administration building, 2 The Circle, Georgetown.

The application has a long history. Council voted 4-1 on April 12, 2016, to deny a rezoning request filed by TD Rehoboth LLC, a Timonium, Md. developer, from AR-1, agricultural-residential, to CR-1, commercial residential, for the 114-acre parcel of farmland.

The developers filed suit June 8, 2016, in Chancery Court against council, stating three council members who voted against the application made statements not supported by the public record. They said the “vote taken to deny the rezoning of the property should be permanently enjoined and a new vote ordered.”

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Council members Mike Vincent, Sam Wilson, George Cole and Joan Deaver, who has since retired, voted against the application. Councilman Rob Arlett voted in favor. The county’s planning and zoning commission had recommended approval of the application.

As a member of the county's planning and zoning commission at the time, Councilman I.G. Burton voted to recommend denial of the application.

On Aug. 11, following briefings and oral arguments, the court granted the plaintiff's motion and ordered a new public hearing. The public record on the application is available 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays at the county’s planning and zoning office in theadministration building.

Vice Chancellor Joseph Slights wrote: “The rezoning application must be re-submitted to council for another vote. That vote will be what it will be. And so long as the record of the vote is adequate to allow for meaningful review, and the vote itself is not the product of arbitrary or capricious decisionmaking, the results of the vote, whatever they are, will stand.”

In addition, a housing subdivision, Overbrook Acres, has been reviewed under the state's Preliminary Land Use Service for the same parcel.

TD Rehoboth LLC of Ruxton, Md., the same developer of the proposed shopping center, has filed plans for a 135-unit, singlefamily development on 66 acres. The owner of the parcel is Overbrook Acres LLC of Hanover, Va.

THE 114-ACRE PARCEL proposed for the Overbrook Town Center shopping complex is on the northeast side of Route 1 at the Cave Neck Road intersection.