The basis for stopping the northern end of the study area at route 80 and not extending it to the natural limit of 270 is not clear. I request that the County consider revising the northern extend of the study area to run a bit further north and be bounded by 270 rather than route 80. It's a much more natural boundary from the community perspective as neighbors connect with each other south of 270 on both sides of route 80 and the community feels more cohesive. Establishing a boundary at route 80 would possibly disturb this natural cohesiveness. Route 270 acts as a more clear and natural boundary for the study area, from a cultural, physical and wildlife perspective.
By extending the range just a small bit to a more natural cultural boundary, the county can avoid splitting in half the small historically black town of Hope Hill and would show respect for this community rather than bifurcating it. Extending will also address the natural lay of the land and not fragment the study area unnecessarily. There are sizable wooded parcels that lie between route 80 and 270 that should be considered within the Sugarloaf study area as they share the same characteristics of the study area and in all likelihood share the same wildlife, etc. Including this area would also afford protection to forested areas that might otherwise not be protected.
The area between route 80 and 270 is part of the fabric of the community and the reason for isolating it from the larger community (and the study area) is unclear. I can imagine future conflict where one neighbor to the south of route 80 has certain planning and zoning requirements while a neighbor to the north of route 80 has a different set of planning and zoning requirements, despite these neighbors seeing themselves as part of the same community and would expect to have consistent planning and zoning requirements. There would not be these kinds of conflicts if 270 were the boundary as the community see it as a natural boundary.
To allay fears of making some sort of big change to the plan, this proposed extension would constitute adding only a small sliver of land compared to the study size, and in many places, this addition would only be the width of a single-owner parcel. Since this area fits the land use and other characteristics of the study area, it would afford a consistency of planning and implementation that would serve the community well. In conclusion, 270 is a better, more effective and easily implementable boundary than route 80 and a change should be made to the study area to reflect these considerations.