The Baltimore Sun

If any place is in need of 'resurgence,' it's U.S. 40

The article about the proposed office building in Oakland Mills ("Oakland Mills office building project is scuttled," Feb. 15) is indicative of the unwise decision by County Executive Ken Ulman and the County Council to purchase for more than $4 million one floor of a future building in Columbia.

My suggestion is to use that money to finally develop a design manual and special zoning regulations as promised more than four years ago to the Route 40 Enhancement Study Committee. The committee consisted of business owners, merchants and residents in the U.S. 40 vicinity. What was most enlightening was that a consensus was built among the members and there was, in my memory, no disagreement.

Currently, there are several vacant buildings, new development and potentially new development in the abandoned businesses. If any place needs "resurgence," it is U.S. 40.

The time is ripe as the Forest Diner and Motel are sold and that site will be redeveloped in the usual manner or by the guidance of the Department of Planning and Zoning with concepts recommended by the committee.

Hopefully, the county executive will give more attention to another part of Howard County - Ellicott City.

Angela Beltram, Ellicott City

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