Westminster council votes to extend proposal deadline for downtown site

April 27, 1999|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,Sun Staff

The Westminster Common Council agreed last night to extend the deadline for proposals for development of the old Farmers Supply Co., a key site for downtown revitalization.

A draft of a new request for proposals was handed out by Karen K. Blandford, the city's housing and community development coordinator, who asked council members to make any suggestions quickly so that the package could be sent to potential development partners.

"It's changed quite a bit since you've last seen it," she said.

The city is marketing the 0.83-acre site at Liberty and Green streets, and officials hope to have construction begin in April 2000, according to the draft. The city also will build a parking garage as part of the project.

Its list of objectives includes increased jobs, pedestrian use, compatible architecture and historical preservation, and increased property value and tax base.

The city's former development partner, Carroll County Bank & Trust Co., planned to build a $6 million office and retail complex but pulled out of the project in January after it was announced that the bank would be acquired by BB&T Corp. of North Carolina.

Construction was to have begun this fall at the site, an eyesore that was cleared last year save for a historic stone building that is to be preserved for use as a restaurant, shop or other attraction.

Councilman Gregory Pecoraro won unanimous approval for his motion to move the application deadline for development proposals to July 30.

Blandford told the council the city has a mailing list of 900 to 1,000 parties that might be interested and that she would like to place business advertisements in local, statewide and regional publications to reach into Philadelphia and Northern Virginia.

In other business, Westminster's proposed tax rate was formally introduced, unchanged from the current rate of 88 cents per $100 of assessed value. A public hearing on the city's budget and tax rate will be held Monday.

Pub Date: 4/27/99

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