Zoning and Development Possible in Ross


Google Maps

Google Maps shows the main intersection near the Venice Pavilion Antiques in the heart of Ross.

Ross township is a rural township founded in 1803. Compared to the local cities such as Hamilton, Oxford, Harrison, and Colerain, it has had little development done to it,  only a few restaurants here and there. Our zoning process, the process that decides what type of business/housing goes into a plot of land, is currently done by the county, but at the next general voting the township public will get to vote on whether or not the zoning rights should go to the township or if it should remain with the county. 

The township has an already proposed zoning commission called ‘EnvisionRoss.’ Which would assume the role of making land use decisions. . It is used for zoning purposes and is updated as often as weekly to monthly by Wendy Moller. 

Project leader Wendy Moeller stated “The project is meant for a smooth transition from the county zoning process to the township… We want to maintain the character and feel of the rural community.” 

Moeller also stated, “If something were to be built in Ross by a business, it would be at no cost to the homeowners; the developers would pay to build out here. The only time locals would have to pay would be for emergency services, like the police or fire departments, and those would be possible levies.” 

The point of EnvisionRoss taking over is to make sure the public gets to see what is happening with the township. Moeller explained that surveys would be posted on the website often to allow the public to have as much say in the future as possible. When asked if she knew any information on planned projects, she mentioned talks of development along 128 and how she heard rumors about Burns farm, but she dismissed them because they are currently out of the township’s control. 

A diagram of the Burns farm development has circulated which was originally posted on his personal facebook page in August 2020 by Larry Thines. It has caused speculation and argument between the community and left them questioning what is next. It could be possible that the county could zone the area of land and allow building on the Burns farm before the township votes on the plan to take over zoning. 

Local homeowners should be aware of the proposed zoning committee due to the fact that it has an indirect relation to their property value and their income and property tax. Voting on the plan could have an effect on the local residents either way it goes, have it be voted in or out.

Local community members shared their thoughts on the proposed zoning.

“Ross should be developed, but not extremely. We don’t have any industry to tax and that means the only tax revenue we have is from residential taxes such as income and property tax. This also means as Ross grows in population, all buildings that need to be built by the local government will be levied, bringing an increase in both of those taxes. If we brought in more industry, more infrastructure, we could balance it out and tax the businesses and lower residential taxes,making homeowners happier,” stated Beth Mitchell, science teacher at RHS.

“I think it should stay as a small town. I mean, if you look at what happened with the Lakota area, West Chester. Absolutely farmland twenty years ago and now it is completely developed. Now, we could develop services and some commercial areas, but not a lot of chain restaurants or non-local businesses, more locally owned businesses are needed around here. So in terms, local development is okay, as in green space/ parks, and local businesses. Ross is a community based on family. It is what Ross has always been. It is what makes it great,” said Rebecca Taylor, business teacher at RHS.

Ross’s future, although undetermined at this moment, is more or less in the hands of the public if all goes according to the proposed zoning commission. If you would like to get more involved, or would just like more information on the zoning commission, visit www.evisionross.com where community updates and surveys will be posted.