Mountaire withdraws conditional-use application for proposed office complex

MILLSBORO – Mountaire Farms of Delaware no longer plans to seek condition-use approval for a proposed office complex near Millsboro.

Sussex County’s Planning & Zoning Office received notification April 15.

POST mountaire revel road sign

Mountaire Farms this week notified the Sussex County Planning & Zoning Office of its intention to withdraw its conditional-use application filed in February for a proposed office complex along Revel Road near Millsboro. (Sussex County Post/Glenn Rolfe).

In the correspondence to County Planning & Zoning Director Lawrence Lank, attorney Dennis L. Schrader of the Morris James Wilson Halbrook and Bayard LLP law firm representing Mountaire stated “please be advised that on behalf of my client, I am informing you that I have been authorized to withdraw” the application.

Mr. Schrader further stated that “no further application is anticipated …”

In its application filed with Sussex County Planning & Zoning, Mountaire Farms planned to utilized 57.952 acres of a nearly 300-acre parcel for office facilities for “agricultural-related industry.”

The property, which borders Revel Road at the intersection of Wiley Branch Road in Dagsboro Hundred, is owned by the Grace United Methodist Church, which consented to Mountaire’s application in early February.

In response to Mountaire’s application, parcel size was questioned.

“You may want to revise the size of the parcel to be used for the office complex,” Mr. Lank indicated in a memo. “Proposing an office complex on 57 acres may not be well received.”

Word of Mountaire’s potential land purchase stoked the rumor mill, culminating in a Feb. 22 public meeting of citizens who voiced concerns about Mountaire’s plans for the property.

The meeting, held at the Indian River Senior Center, was organized by Community Opposed to Secret Transaction, and included a PowerPoint presentation by Maria Payan, a consultant with Socially Responsible Agricultural Project.

Some residents suspected Mountaire might someday seek to use some of the land for a poultry processing facility.

Mike Tirrell, Mountaire’s Vice President of Human Resources and Business Services, spoke at the Feb. 22 meeting.

“The plan is to build a commercial office building,” said Mr. Tirrell. “That’s what we are looking at doing with the land. That’s it.”

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