Commissioners to buy parking lot near library

$215,000 purchase will be available to expand downtown branch

$215,000 purchase will be available to expand downtown branch

September 22, 2009|By HEATHER KEELS

HAGERSTOWN -- The Washington County Commissioners voted Tuesday to pay $215,000 to buy a parking lot near the Washington County Free Library that officials say will be needed for parking once the downtown library expands.

The lot is behind 29-33 E. Antietam St., the former site of a Greyhound bus terminal and more recently the Washington Spy Restaurant. It is across Cramer's Alley from the current library parking lot, which will be taken up by the expansion project, according to Joseph F. Kuhna, the county's real property administrator.

The commissioners voted 3-1 to buy the lot, with Commissioner Kristin B. Aleshire opposed and Commissioner William J. Wivell abstaining.

Aleshire said he didn't think the commissioners should approve the purchase until they had seen a concrete plan for the expanded library. Aleshire said several different plans for the library had been considered and he preferred an earlier plan that involved purchasing the entire property.


Wivell originally seconded the motion to buy the lot, but he withdrew his second when Aleshire voiced his concerns.

Kuhna said that, to his knowledge, the library board was committed to expanding the library on its current site and was well into the design of the project.

The portion of the parking lot the county would need to purchase is about one-third of an acre and has been appraised for $215,000, Kuhna said.

The library needs 144 parking spaces as part of the expansion project, he said.

How they voted

The Washington County Commissioners voted 3-1 Tuesday to pay $215,000 to buy a parking lot for use by the expanded Washington County Free Library.

John F. Barr, yes

Terry Baker, yes

Kristin B. Aleshire, no

James F. Kercheval, yes

William J. Wivell, abstained

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