arly May, a proposal was submitted by the Fifth District Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee to the Maryland Department of Transportation seeking funding to establish bike lanes and post signs on a loop around downtown Towson. This past Thursday, the department received a letter of support for the project, called the “Bike Beltway”, from Maravene Loeschke, president of Towson University.
Loeschke wrote, “…I believe this proposal is a tremendous opportunity to more fully engage the university community with the greater Towson area…The Towson Bike Beltway will also improve access for the Towson community.”
Fifth District County Councilman David Marks established the advisory committee that submitted the application for the grant. A decision on who receives the grant should be made later this summer.
fficials at the Maryland Institute College of Art will break ground this fall on Commons II, a $16.5 million addition that will allow more undergraduates to live on campus. The five-story building will include 62 apartments and accommodate 240 students. It will be an extension of The Commons, which opened on McMechen Street in 1992 with 99 apartments housing 350 freshman. The site is currently a parking lot on North Avenue west of Mount Royal Avenue.
Commons II, designed by Hord Coplan Macht, will also include a performance space, lecture hall and artist studios. Its design attempts to reflect its role as a connector between Bolton Hill and the Station North Arts District. In addition, MICA is planning a $2 million renovation of the existing Commons by late 2013. Ayers Saint Gross will add a laundry center, cafe lounge, mailboxes, a connection to Commons II, and possibly an exhibition space.
When Commons II opens (scheduled for fall of 2013), MICA will have on-campus housing for more than 1,000 students.
Read more at The Baltimore Sun here.
ome late Fall/early Winter, Towson University’s WTMD 89.7 plans to be fully moved into its new location at the Towson City Center near the Towson Roundabout. In addition to conference, classroom and office space, the space will offer four studios: an on-air studio, two production studios, and a large-scale performance studio that can transform into a 1,300 SF performance space with the help of a retractable wall. The new facility comprises 8,000 SF, more than quadrupling their current square footage at the university’s campus.
On WTMD’s website, General Manager Steve Yasko (pictured above) said the space will be a combination of a community meeting space, an education center, and an all-around music lover’s clubhouse. “Our listeners and the public will be invited to WTMD every day to experience the best in national and Baltimore bands.”
WTMD also plans to move their antenna and transmitter to the top of the building (formerly known as the Investment Building) for a further-reaching and better sound quality. The facility will also host movie screenings from Baltimore students and filmmakers enrolled in Towson’s Electronic Media and Film department.
espite the fact that the majority of Americans look for goods and services online, 53 percent of small businesses in Maryland do not have their own website. But that could all change next year with the help of Google. The Internet giant has partnered with the state to provide free websites for small businesses for a period of one year. The program, called “Maryland Get Your Business Online”, is part of a larger effort Google has already begun in other states like Texas, Vermont, Michigan and California, as well as overseas.
With the help of software company Intuit, businesses will be offered a website, web hosting, and domain names. After one year, registered businesses will have to pay $2 per month for their domain name and $4.99 per month for the website and hosting.
Interested small business owners can join on July 17 at the Legg Mason Tower in Baltimore to register for websites and attend seminars on building successful websites.
For more information, visit the website for “Maryland Get Your Business Online” here.
trial this week between Bengies Drive-In, the Baltimore area’s last drive-in movie theater, and a neighboring Royal Farms, may determine the fate of the drive-in’s business, according to owner D. Edward Vogel. The reason? Vogel says that lights from the convenience store, located across the street from the theater on Eastern Blvd, interfere with the view from at least two-thirds of the drive-in’s 750 parking spaces.
Not only does the light distract viewers from their drive-in experience, Vogel argues, but they also delay the theater’s annual opening by several weeks, until nearby trees are in full bloom and act as a barrier. Additionally, it’s prevented him from adding a second screen, a goal he’s had for years.
Vogel is seeking money to erect an 800 foot wall that would run along Eastern Blvd. Royal Farms maintains that it goes above and beyond the laws of Baltimore County. The case is being heard before a Baltimore County Circuit Court jury this week.
Read more at The Baltimore Sun here.
ome August, four new retailers will be open for business at Towson Town Center. Marbles: The Brain Store, a game and puzzle retailer, will occupy 1,475 SF. Sur La Table, a kitchen tools and cookware store, will take up 4,800 SF. Lilly Pulitzer, a women’s clothing and accessories store, will lease 1,800 SF in July. And L’Occitane, a body care and fragrance store, will occupy 858 SF.
Additionally, the existing White House/Black Market, a women’s clothing, accessories and shoes store, will expand from 2,171 SF to 3,725 SF.
etails are being finalized on a second location for Mother’s, the Fedral Hill bar and grille. Though the exact location has not been made public, the restaurant would be situated off Route 2 in Arnold, near Anne Arundel Community College. Owner Dave Rather (pictured above) hopes to finish the deal within the next few weeks, in which case the new location would open in the Fall.
Many former Federal Hill residents now live in Severna Park according to Rather, who lives in Anne Arundel County himself. The current location is known for its purple patio and Baltimore pride on Ravens game days.
For more information on Mother’s, visit their website here.
altimore County’s Eastpoint Mall sold Tuesday at auction for $30 million, despite state records showing an assessed value of $58.6 million. The winning bid belonged to LNR Property LLC of Miami Beach, Florida. Thor Equities LLC of New York had previously bought the mall for $112 million, nearly four times as much. It is unclear whether LNR Property plans to sell the mall again or keep it under their wing.
Eastpoint Mall was built in 1956 and underwent two renovations, once in 1991 and again in 2005. It is located at the intersection of Eastern Ave, North Point Blvd and I-695. It includes around 100 retail, restaurant and office tenants, with anchors including Burlington Coat Factory, DSW, Sears, Shoppers World and JCPenney.
For more information on Eastpoint Mall, visit their website here.
n July 15, Barry’s Magic Shop, which has been “serving the magic community since 1974″ in Montgomery County, will close its doors. The store is owned by Barry Taylor and his wife Susan Kang. In addition to selling merchandise, the location has offered lectures, performances, lessons, and one-on-one advice. All items have now been discounted to 30% off.
Five years ago, the shop moved from a much smaller space on Georgia Ave to Nicholson Lane, near the White Flint Mall. Its current location has been called one of the largest magic shops in the country.
Read more at The Washington Post here.
For more information on Barry’s Magic Shop, visit their website here.
ethesda will see construction breaking on Rock Spring Center some time this summer. The 1 million square foot mixed-use development, located at Old Georgetown Road and Rock Sprind Drive, will include two office towers, a hotel, residential units and retail space. And Silverspot, a luxury movie theater owned by one of the largest theater companies in South America, will be included in the mix.
This will be the third location for the cinema, with a current home in Naples, FL and one set to open soon in Miami. The theater distinguishes itself with leather seats, spacier foot room, and above average snack offerings. In addition, they provide a full restaurant and bar to cater to the dinner-and-a-movie outing.
For more information on Silverspot Cinema, visit their website here.