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Developer floats idea of Dundalk commercial, office project

He suggests 'big-box' stores at government center, offices at old distillery site

May 02, 2012|By Arthur Hirsch, The Baltimore Sun

In an interview, Dennis McCartney of Dundalk called Vontran "an abysmal steward of the property," mentioning specifically the broken chain-link fence and the soil dumped on the grounds from excavations at the Yorkway site.

Vontran said he had permits to use the Sollers Point property for the soil from the Yorkway project. He said it's been difficult to maintain the property and keep trespassers out, and that's why he's eager to redevelop the land.

Olszewski, an Edgemere Democrat who has the authority to approve or deny the zoning request, said he hasn't taken a position on the North Point/Sollers Point proposal. He said he wanted to see how residents respond to the idea, and he urged Vontran months ago to test the waters.

"I said, 'It doesn't make sense unless you gauge community support,' " Olszewski said.

The county has no immediate plans to do anything with the government center, which opened in 1953, said spokeswoman Ellen Kobler. Most of the building is used as a police precinct and for Recreation and Parks, including a gym, auditorium and athletic fields next to it.

Vontran said it is time to realize the potential of the Sollers Point property, whether he can make a deal with the county for the government center site or not.

"That was part of our original idea to do that," said Vontran. "We can't wait for the county. … It could take the county forever."

arthur.hirsch@baltsun.com

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