The Presbyterian Home of Maryland has signed a contract to sell the historic Bosley Mansion and land in Towson to two local developers whose work includes preservation projects.
Bosley Estates LLC, a partnership of Martin Azola and Delbert Adams, is set to purchase the 4.5 acre property for an undisclosed amount following a 90-day design period, Azola said.
Azola, who was interested in the property when it was put on the market a year ago, had proposed a 40-unit condominium development at the time, but said that the use of the property is still being worked out.
"Until we know clearly what the building will be it's going to be hard to nail anything in detail," Azola said.
"We're in the business of adaptively reusing and restoring buildings," he said. "That's the operative thought for the mansion in particular and perhaps the other buildings."
In May 2016, the Presbyterian Home of Maryland nursing home announced it was leaving the 70,000-square-foot building on Georgia Court near the heart of Towson after nearly 90 years and put the property up for sale.
Presbyterian Home officials, who announced the contract through a publicist on Wednesday, declined to comment.
Towson-based Caves Valley Partners made an initial offer to buy the property and struck a tentative agreement to lease the space to Baltimore County for offices.
Following an outcry from neighbors, who feared the plan would increase traffic and put stress on street parking, Caves Valley pulled out of the deal in January.
Much of the opposition was led by the Save Bosley Mansion committee of the Southland Hills Improvement Association.
"The Azola Companies and Delbert Adams Construction are well known for their quality work, historic preservation and adaptive re-use projects," Kate Knott, a Southland Hills resident who did research on the property for the association, said in an email.
Azola said his business, Azola Inc., has focused on restoring old buildings for more than 50 years. The company recently renovated the historic Ivy Hotel in Baltimore City and did work to preserve the Historic Towson Jail property, which was built on land donated to the county in 1854.
If the sale is completed, one thing that would remain, Azola said, is the privately owned but publicly used green space in front of the mansion.
"It would definitely be an amenity to what we do with the buildings, and we wouldn't want to lock the neighborhood out," Azola said, adding the developers committed to saving the space for "reasonable use" by neighbors.
Azola's partner on the project, Delbert Adams, owns Towson-based Delbert Adams Construction and worked on restoring the Washington Monument in Baltimore in the 1980s. His more recent focus is on custom home construction, and the renovation and construction of private clubs in Maryland.
"Hopefully within a period of time we'll have more clarity with what we're going to do," Adams said. "It's a fantastic piece of property and a fabulous building in the heart of Towson and it deserves to have a rebirth and new life."
Baltimore Sun Media Group reporter Rachael Pacella contributed to this story.