Proposed corporate retreat, bed-and-breakfast, could attract tourism to Washington County

Maryland

BOONSBORO, Md. (WDVM) — It has been on the drawing board for over a year. Brandon Green’s proposed tourist retreat and conference center in the Boonsboro, Maryland countryside. But not everybody is on board with the project.

With so much interest in tourism development in Washington County, why not convert Green’s quiet and peaceful farmland with historic structures into bed-and-breakfast, and retreat for area businesses that want a unique setting away from the office.

“It’s the opportunity to allow tourists to come and understand what it means to have a farm and where your food comes from and how all of that works,” Green explained.

Kelsi Palmer is a champion of Green’s proposal. She said it is unique for the region and predicts it will be hugely successful.

“I believe that a lot of businesses don’t have a specific place that they can turn to that supports them in their business,” Palmer said.

And Palmer and Green stress the uniqueness of the retreat. It is unrivaled in the region.

“When they’re selling products and when they’re doing dinners here,” Palmer said, “most of that stuff is locally sourced.”

Not all in the neighborhood are on board with the idea. They are concerned about potential noise, increased traffic, environmental impacts. However, Green wants to assure the region he is committed to being a good neighbor.

“We’re also making huge investments in the environmental side of things,” said Green, “stormwater management systems and all kinds of environmental systems to help the environmental impact that we’re having here at the farm.”

The project has been on the drawing board for over a year. Green said he already has compromised on his initial plan — no more events bringing large conference groups to the property, focusing instead on smaller gatherings.

Washington County will be holding hearings on the proposal this spring. Meanwhile, there is a community forum in Boonsboro on Jan. 24, at 7 p.m. at the American Legion. And Palmer said Green had made a concerted effort to meet with business and community leaders in the region to convince them this project can be a win-win for tourism and economic growth.

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