April 18, 2014 12:19 pm ET
Outgoing councilman to seal the fate of the Government Center development
I can hear the tune now: “Signed, Sealed, Delivered.”
And, while you’re at it, cue the proverbial “heavyset lady,” because she’ll be taking the stage soon.
Sources close to the matter tell me that retiring Councilman John Olszewski Sr. will write the required Planned Unit Development (PUD) for the North Point Government Center.
In other words, the fate of the embattled landmark is pretty much sealed. Remember that Mr. Olszewski Sr. along with the rest of the council voted unanimously for Vanguard’s RFP. For Dundalk United there is always the option of a legal battle plus some other code issues that could play a role in the construction process.
To say that this is controversial would be an understatement. There has long been a debate that pitted the county against Dundalk United, a group that opposed the sale of the Government Center, which they believe is the heart and soul of Dundalk.
Now, since Olszewski announced that he would not seek reelection in 2014, he is set to leave his controversial mark on Dundalk for decades to come with his version of the PUD.
Despite all of the debate at the April 10 meeting at the Dundalk High School, this PUD will allow developer Len Weinberg and his Vanguard Company to move forward with their plans.
Speaking of those plans, my sources also say that Mr. Weinberg may be going back to the drawing board after hearing the reaction from the audience at the meeting. It was obvious that the crowd was in no mood to hear about losing the Government Center. Despite Mr. Weinberg’s conciliatory attempt to appease their concerns, there was no common ground found—only more material that has to be shoveled.
In other words, finding common ground will require some heavy equipment to budge the opposing sides. (I seem to remember an old saying about an unstoppable force meeting up with an immovable object.)