The applicant wants to turn them into a retail operation.
Frederick, Md. (KM). Some industrial properties on the east end of Frederick could be developed into a retail center.
The Board of Aldermen is considering a rezoning request for the Bluegrass Parcel on the west of side of East South Street which is 11.4-acres, and the Wolfe and Romsburg Parcels on the east side of East South Street, both totaling 4.98-acres. The applicant wants to reclassify the of six properties, which altogether total 16..5-acres, from heavy industrial to general commercial.
City Planner Grace Bogdan told the Aldermen during last Wednesday’s Workshop that these parcels are not used for heavy industry any longer. “The site is no longer part of the Bluegrass Quarry’s operation. The asphalt plant that operated on the former Wolfe Parcel closed in 2011 because the business could not be sustained. And because of the small site both individually or collectively as a parcel, it’s no longer viable as an industrial use and has drawn little interest from industrial purchasers,” she says.
Alderman Michael O’Connor says it’s time to look at new uses for those parcels. “It’s clear that the neighborhood, from my perspective, has changed. And the history of the last five years and the inability of those vacant properties to find new users that met the current zoning suggests that the market has changed relative to those properties including what’s around it,” he says.
The Board of Aldermen is expected to vote on this rezoning request on Thursday, September 7th.
Attorney Dave Severn, who represents the owners of the property, the Peterson Companies, says the fact that there’s no interest in these properties for heavy industry could be due to regulation covering industrial uses, and these sites wouldn’t meet all of the standards.
He says the Peterson Companies will do an excellent job with these parcels. “Peterson Companies is one of the most recognizable, reputable developers of the region, if not the country,” Severn says. “At least the most famous project of which we’re all aware of is National Harbor. They do a very good job wherever they work.”
The Peterson Companies also developed Frederick Crossing.
Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak expressed support for the rezoning. “I think that this is well put together. It makes perfect sense,” she says.
By Kevin McManus