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Build or get off the sidewalk, Marks tells Towson Row

Baltimore County Councilman David Marks said Wednesday that he’s introducing legislation to require the county to reopen a public sidewalk that is closed in connection with a construction project if no activity has occurred for six months or longer.

“While this legislation has a countywide focus, it is no secret that I am frustrated with the lack of activity at the Towson Row project. Many residents share my frustration,” Marks said in a statement. “The closure of the Chesapeake Avenue sidewalk has not only impacted pedestrians, but affected businesses along Chesapeake Avenue. The popular 7 West Bistro restaurant is one of the impacted businesses.”

Buildings at the corner of Towsontowne Boulevard and York Road were demolished to make way for Towson Row, which is planning to be anchored by a Whole Foods market. But since then the lot has sat vacant and quiet, with no construction underway.

Site of the future Towson Row

The county and developer Caves Valley had been mum on the cause for the delay, but then said in December that they had found solid rock under the site, which derailed plans for an underground garage. 

Ellen Kobler, a spokeswoman for County Executive Kevin Kamenetz — who has touted the Towson Row project as a way to make Towson into a Bethesda-like suburb — said Kamenetz “is going to let the process play out and won’t comment on the specific proposed legislation.”

Marks said Bill 25-17 will be discussed on Tuesday, May 16, at 2 p.m. in the Council chambers, with a vote on Thursday, May 25 at 10 a.m.

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