Advertisement

Developer proceeds with plan despite commission denial

September 28, 2000

Developer proceeds with plan despite commission denial



By KIMBERLY YAKOWSKI / Staff Writer


Although a Hagerstown historic preservation commission denied a man's request to tear down three buildings in the city's historic district Thursday, the developer will continue with plans to build a $12 million office building at the site.

Marc Silverman, of Rockville, Md., made the petition to the Preservation Design District Commission and clearly expected to be turned down.

"It was just a formality," he said following the meeting.

Silverman has proposed constructing a four-story office building on top of two-underground parking levels along the first block of South Potomac Street.

His plans are to tear down three buildings at 32-36, 38-40 and 46-48 S. Potomac St., which are on the site of his proposed office complex. All of the buildings are structurally sound but contain hazardous materials such as asbestos and lead, he said.

Advertisement

"It''s important not to overlook how not tearing the buildings down would inhibit and be an economic hardship to the city," Silverman told the commission before the decision was final.

He was turned down because the buildings are considered integral components of the historical character of the downtown.

The commission did not consider Silverman's development plan, only his demolition request.

Silverman said he will apply for a "Certificate of Hardship" to get permission to demolish the buildings.

To obtain that certificate Silverman would have to show his project would be of greater public benefit than keeping the buildings, and that his project could not be done unless the buildings were torn down. City procedure prevents Silverman from first applying for the hardship certificate.

"The shot in the arm for the city outweighs the historical value for retainment," Silverman told the commission.

Staff Writer Dan Kulin contributed to this story.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|