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Parkville Delegate Raises Questions About Bus Loop Sale

Del. John Cluster, who represents Parkville, recently asked the three-member board of the State Department of Public Works to reconsider the sale of the state-owned land near the Lavender Avenue parking lot.

A state delegate wants high-ranking state officials to reconsider the sale of a small tract of land surrounding the Lavender Avenue Parking lot because the price is too low.

Del. John Cluster, in a letter addressed to Gov. Martin O'Malley, treasurer Nancy Kopp and comptroller Peter Franchot, questions why the state would sell the .2-acre lot surrounding the Lavender Avenue parking lot for the lowest appraised value.

A copy of the letter Cluster sent to the Governor is attached to this article.

The three officials sit on the board of the State Department of Public Works and are expected to make a decision regarding the so-called 'bus loop' property near the corner of Taylor Avenue and Harford Road at a Wednesday hearing.

The Baltimore County Revenue Authority needs to buy the land in order to fulfill a stipulation on the sale of the parking lot to Towson-based DMS Development. DMS, which won a bid for the lot back in May of 2011, would build a Walgreens there.

The state board received three appraisals for the land owned by the Maryland Department of Transportation—one, done internally, came in at $52,950. The other two appraisals, done independently came in at $160,000 and $233,000 respectively.

Back in April, a Revenue Authority official said the price of the bus loop land might cause the quasi-public agency to reconsider the sale of the lot entirely.

Cluster recently said that he could not understand why the state would sell the land for the lowest possible price at a time when "state coffers are in deep need of money".

Cluster's letter to the board expresses exactly that.

"From my point of view the Maryland Transit Administration and the Parkville community will be losing if this proposal/’sale goes through as being considered," he wrote.

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