Pirate's Wharf Concerns in Wicomico County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Pirate's Wharf Concerns in Wicomico County

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Pirate's Wharf (Photo WBOC) Pirate's Wharf (Photo WBOC)

WHITEHAVEN, Md. - The piece of land known as Pirate's Wharf is on the table for debate for Wicomico County Council. 

The county has owned the land for nearly 20 years and they are still deciding what to do with more than 300 acres. 

A group of environmentalists are speaking out about their concerns. 

Joan Maloof is the founder of Old Growth Forest Network, a group that fights to preserve forests. 

Maloof believes there should be one forest in every county that is left alone. 

"These public forests like Pirate's Wharf should be left to develop in their native diversity," Maloof said. 

However, Maloof is not against the county's plans to build walking trails through Pirate's Wharf - but within reason. 

"I am against any thinning of the forest which sounds good but in reality it will destroy the nature that it has right now," Maloof said. 

Holiday Johnson is also fighting for the forest. She said she hopes the county keeps the natural setting that already exists. 

"I just really hope they are able to turn those cornfields into productive wildflower and wild plant fields that then will attract butterflies and birds," Johnson said. 

Niamh Shortt says when planning, the safety of the environment should be a top priority. 

"Any sort of be it permanent structure of living structure that you're taking into consideration the run off again, so if you are building a pavilion where is that water going if it runs off," Shortt said. 

Wicomcio County council has a park master plan underway to decide the future of Pirate's Wharf Park. However, the county has been awarded a federal grant of $820,000 from the Natural Parks Service for recreational development. 

WBOC spoke to county councilman Weston Young and he said the majority of the project is focused on the farmland and waterfront - not the forest. 

Young said there will be time for public input in the coming weeks. 

The council meets again on October 16th to discuss the acceptance of the grant and the plans moving forward. 

 

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