"Most people, I think, are tired of blighted buildings and empty storefronts in downtown Towson," Marks said. "The Towson City Center project would bring hundreds of new customers to businesses along Allegheny Avenue and York Road, and that's a key step in the revitalization process."

Greater Towson Council of Community Associations opposed the sign measure, and this week appealed to County Executive Kevin Kamenetz to veto the bill.

In an email to Kamenetz forwarded to the Towson Times on Oct. 27, GTCCA President David Kosak said, "our delegation, comprised of individuals elected from neighborhoods within the greater Towson community, has voted unanimously and requests that you (Kamenetz) immediately veto this piece of legislation.

"(T)his bill could have the unintended consequence of similar signage on buildings throughout Towson," Kosak said in the letter, "We understand that the impetus for this bill was the need for zoning relief by one specific project and we are uncomfortable with wide-ranging legislation being enacted to benefit one project.


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Kosak wrote to Kamenetz that, "If you are to sign this bill into law, you have effectively disenfranchised the very people that will patronize a revitalized downtown Towson."

Having heard of the constituent concerns, Marks said this week he'll take an unusual step and amend his own bill.

"I'm trying to respond to the concerns I've heard and appear flexible," Marks said on Monday. "Within that area defined in the other bill, I will prohibit electronic changeable copy above a certain elevation."

According to Marks, the new bill, which will be introduced at the Nov. 7 Council meeting, will set a height limit of 55 feet.

"I think that addresses most of the concerns," he said. "Most people seem to be concerned about having electronic signage on top of buildings that they can see from miles away."

Mirmiran would not comment on the signage bill, calling the point "moot" after its passage.

He declined to release conceptual drawings that the company has made to show some of the signage aspects of the building, responding to an email request from the Towson Times that, "Any signage renderings are purely conceptual drafts and not actual designs at this point."

But Voith confirmed that aspects of the rooftop signage permitted by the new bill will be utilized by the university.

"There's a south-facing sign that looks toward our campus, and another east-facing sign shared by Towson University and Mile One," Voith said. "That's the side of the building that looks toward the mall."

First-floor food

Meanwhile, the restaurant, Cunningham Kitchen, will be run by the Bagby Restaurant Group, which operates the Bagby Pizza Company in downtown Baltimore.

Carmel Gambacorta, marketing director for the Bagby Restaurant Group, said they just finished designing the restaurant's logo and are working on the design of the space, which will be on the first floor of the building, but haven't made any announcements about the concept or menu of the restaurant.

"It's in the development stage right now, in terms of concept and everything that goes along with that," Gambacorta said.

Gambacorta echoed the developers sentiments in hoping to be open by late spring or early summer 2012.