Laurel Growing in Size, Not so Much in Population - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Laurel Growing in Size, Not so Much in Population

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(Photo: WBOC) (Photo: WBOC)

LAUREL, Del.- The town of Laurel in western Sussex County has seen a great increase in landmass over the last 10 years.

The historic area, proud of its "small town" character, has doubled over this time, due to a concentrated annexing effort from the town council.

Properties, mostly to the north and northeast of downtown Laurel, have joined the town, accepting the local taxes and government. All of the annexations were granted following requests from the homeowners themselves.

"It's the natural progression of things," Councilman Don Phillips said. "You have to have growth to pay for higher expenses."

Phillips said that the growth of the town is likely due to increased efforts by the council to provide services to these areas. Within the next two months, Phillips said that the town will start phase one of a project that will expand waterlines from the center of town to Route 13.

They hope that this expansion will further invite developers to build their businesses in the town. Mayor John Shwed said that McDonald's has already announced plans to build on recently annexed territory.

In downtown Laurel, most citizens have accepted these new neighbors without much concern and are excited for further annexation.

"I would love it," says Gloria Frisby, a Laurel resident. "Because then I ain't got to spend all that gas to go everywhere. I can walk."

Peggy Ann Long, another homeowner in Laurel, said that she was open to the expansion, but was worried that it might taint the town's "small town" charm.

"I like the small town feel because I think people are always there for one another," Long said.

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