Official requests land for school

Ruppersberger letter asks for 54 acres at Rosewood

February 13, 2002|By Stephanie Desmon | Stephanie Desmon,SUN STAFF

Baltimore County Executive C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger has asked the governor to set aside 54 acres of state-owned land for a prospective school in fast-growing Owings Mills.

In a letter to Gov. Parris N. Glendening, the county executive asked for help in having part of the Rosewood Center, a facility for the developmentally disabled, donated for use by the public schools. With land in the northwestern part of the county disappearing rapidly, Ruppersberger wants to have a parcel in reserve should a new school in be needed.

"I believe this an urgent and necessary step for the future of our county," Ruppersberger wrote in the letter sent last week.

The county executive stopped short, said his spokeswoman, Elise Armacost, of saying the area has enough pupils to justify another middle school. Construction is scheduled to begin on a 600-seat middle school on Windsor Mill Road during the 2003-2004 school year. And a study of enrollment in the northwest area is going to be done this year.

"Land in that area is very hard to get," said Donald F. Krempel, who oversees construction for the county schools.

School officials would need to survey the land, zoned for light manufacturing, to see if it is suitable for a campus, though from a "cursory standpoint, [it] looks fine," Krempel said.

Rosewood Center, built in 1888, contained more than 600 acres of farmland and woodlands, but as more residents have been deinstitutionalized, much of the land has been sold or donated to nonprofit organizations.

A spokeswoman for the governor said Glendening and his staff have not seen the letter and have made no decisions on the matter.

Del. Robert A. Zirkin, an Owings Mills Democrat, has been lobbying to have a middle school built in that community. New Town Elementary School opened last fall and is more than 200 pupils over capacity, and New Town High School is being built across the street. Zirkin says the addition of those two buildings shows the need for a new middle school.

Zirkin also wrote a letter to Glendening, co-signed by the rest of the District 11 legislative delegation, asking that the state set aside land for the school.

He said the letter from Ruppersberger, whose second four-year term expires in December, was "definitely a step in the right direction."

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.