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Council gives informal OK for Discovery Station plan

December 07, 1999|By DAN KULIN /Staff Writer

Plans to turn an empty warehouse in downtown Hagerstown into an interactive science center called Discovery Station, took another step toward becoming a reality Tuesday.

The Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday informally approved lease and purchase option agreements for the former Tusing warehouse, a vacant three-story brick building at the rear of a parking lot at 58 E. Washington St. The city-owned building is near City Hall and is visible from the first blocks of East Franklin Street and North Potomac Avenue.

Under the terms of the agreements, Discovery Station at Hagerstown Inc., a nonprofit corporation, will lease the building at $1 per year for five years. Before the end of the lease Discovery Station can opt to purchase the building for $110,000.

Also, construction or renovation at the site must begin before September.

Discovery Station representatives at Tuesday's council meeting said they plan to build a $1 million addition to the building. The planned addition would almost double the size of the building.

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The council is expected to formally approve the agreements with Discovery Station during its Dec. 21 council meeting.

A completed Discovery Station will include exhibits on dinosaurs and telescopes, among others, Discovery Station representatives have said.

The city paid $360,000 for the building and adjacent parking lot in November 1997, according to city records.

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