Drivers who use the Route 40 and Route 715 interchange in the Aberdeen area should expect numerous lane closures over the next year as the construction project there continues.

David Phillips, a representative of the Maryland State Highway Administration, gave the Aberdeen City Council a brief update on the project at Monday night's regular meeting.

The interchange project includes widening Route 715 on the bridge at the Aberdeen Proving Ground gate and the bridge over Route 40. There are also plans to relocate the visitors center entrance for Aberdeen Proving Ground, construct new stormwater management facilities and widen the ramp from eastbound Route 40 to southbound Route 715.

In the upcoming phase, the State Highway Administration has planned road closures and a detour for the Route 40 ramp to Route 715 starting this spring and lasting a year. On both sides of Route 40, drivers can expect lane closures Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. and between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m. the next day.


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For Route 715 northbound, closures may take place Sunday through Thursday between 7 p.m. and 2 p.m. the next day. For 715 southbound, lanes may be closed Sunday through Thursday between 9 a.m. and 5 a.m. the next day. This portion is expected to be complete mid-summer 2013.

New ordinances

There was little discussion as the council re-introduced a bill that would establish a new tax subclass for office buildings with a minimum of 50,000 square feet and a LEED Silver designation or a similar title for energy efficiency. The ordinance was originally introduced in May, but was never brought to a vote and the process started over, City Manager Doug Miller wrote in an email Wednesday.

After the first introduction, Mayor Mike Bennett said the tax subclass would allow qualifying buildings to only pay 25 percent of the property tax rate for the first three years, 50 percent for the fourth year and 45 percent for the fifth year.

Council members also introduced an ordinance that, if passed, would establish a tax credit for real property owned by Habitat for Humanity.

Other business

A preliminary site plan was approved for the Corner at Beards Hill, a former auto dealership that is proposed to have two 10,000-square-foot commercial buildings on Beards Hill Road between Route 22 and West Bel Air Avenue. A final subdivision plat for two lots of Beards Hill Park was also approved unanimously.

Recognitions

Sanford Fisher presented Bennett, Councilman Bruce Garner and Police Chief Henry Trabert with plaques thanking them for their help in the Aberdeen football program.

The city council recognized Lance Hersh, owner of Saxon Diamond Centers, for his time as president of the Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce.

Upcoming meeting

The next council meeting is Monday, Jan. 30, at 7 p.m. at city hall.