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Growing Calls For Eminent Domain To Address Rolling Mill Holdouts

October 4th, 2019 by WCBC Radio

Now several years and $6 million into the project- still no ground breaking for the proposed Cumberland Gateway Plaza- and there are growing calls in some circles to move forward with eminent domain to address the few remaining holdouts.  The planned shopping plaza, in the Rolling Mill section of town between Maryland Avenue and Park Street, was first discussed in 2015. Plans for the site include a hotel, restaurants and shops. The biggest holdup at this point is that there are still about a dozen property owners who have refused to sell thus far slowing progress at the site. The project could move forward as a build around- but the feeling is that would be lead to a lesser commercial development and less revenue for the city. Mayor Ray Morriss said he would support using eminent domain if necessary- but that could delay the project even further…

11 Responses to “Growing Calls For Eminent Domain To Address Rolling Mill Holdouts”

  1. October 04, 2019 at 5:54 am, Steve said:

    Let’s get together & throw Morriss’s Family out on the street and take their home they have occupied for their entire adult lives. Then throw him out of City Hall, which will happen during the next election. This guy & his side kicks are out of this world!! Leave these folks alone.


  2. October 04, 2019 at 5:59 am, mac said:

    As this item reads; “…there are still about a dozen property owners who have refused to sell..”. The homeowners were made an offer and they chose the option of staying in their homes.
    That is now coming to an end. Not only will they be evicted but they will be forced to accept whatever payout is chosen for them. These homeowners are being given an offer they can’t refuse. So much for the original offer.


    • October 04, 2019 at 7:29 am, Jay said:

      We don’t need another hotel at Rolling Mills. We’re getting a luxurious boutique hotel in the old M and T bank building downtown. >


    • October 04, 2019 at 10:06 am, kevin said:

      > Actually Mac, you do not understand how the process works in Maryland. Maryland law makes it hard to take property for commercial purposes. If the City wanted to build a highway there, or a public building, it would be fairly easy. Maryland passed laws, at the behest of the Supreme Court, to limit commercial interests from using eminent domain. The process will take at least two years from when the process starts and involve at least two trials, one before the Md. Court of Appeals, and possibly the State Supreme court. All of which will cost money, ALL of which the city will have to pay. All of it. For a city that has to do everything on the cheap, this is a very expensive rabbit hole. The folks in Rolling Mill have a team of lawyers – nationally known – ready to defend them for free. Game on!


      • October 04, 2019 at 10:47 am, mac said:

        > However long it takes these people will lose their homes. Hopefully they will hold out and go through the entire process, but the city and developer may be hoping that the homeowners will be swayed by dire warnings of court and due process.
        The legal team in place should be able to convince the homeowners to tough it out for the long run. Possibly, after another 2 or 3 years the city will give up and go pick on the 300 block of Washington St. That will make Dave Norman happy and protect his property value.


        • October 04, 2019 at 11:42 am, kevin said:

          > Most of the owners are in for the long haul. Two have told me they look forward to the fight.


  3. October 04, 2019 at 5:52 pm, Ed Dodrill said:

    “He’s got an Interstate running through his front yard … and he thinks he’s got so good, oh yeah!” – “Pink Houses” by John Mellancamp


    • October 05, 2019 at 7:43 am, mac said:

      > But he owns a home and wants to stay in it. No matter what you may think about it.


      • October 06, 2019 at 1:40 pm, kevin said:

        > Exactly. What right does anyone have to take a citizen’s home and give it to someone else FOR PROFIT? It’s fascinating how we turn on people and our values for money.


  4. October 07, 2019 at 4:25 am, Mark said:

    I call B.S. on this statement: ” Plans for the site include a hotel, restaurants and shops.” Who’s plans? Is there FINALLY a developer waiting in the lobby at city hall with these ‘plans’?? Heck NO. Brian Grim & CEDC should have had a developer committed to this whole thing FIRST, but no, they were too dumb. And now the current fools want to be arrogant & try to save face by forcing this stupidity into court. Good luck with that!


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