Per­ryville adds for­mer out­lets site to en­ter­prise zone

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By JANE BELLMYER

jbellmyer@ce­cil­whig.com

— The mayor and com­mis­sion­ers voted 3-1 Tues­day night to des­ig­nate the for­mer Per­ryville Out­lets site as an en­ter­prise zone.

Com­mis­sioner Michelle Linkey cast the lone dis­sent­ing vote on the res­o­lu­tion, say­ing she has a dif­fer­ent vi­sion for the site of the for­mer out­let mall on Heather Lane.

“I think that would be a per­fect place for a movie the­ater,” Linkey said after the vote was cast.

The lo­ca­tion right off In­ter­state 95 would draw peo­ple in from else­where in Ce­cil County as well as from neigh­bor­ing Har­ford County and Penn­syl­va­nia, she said.

The con­cept plans for the

PER­RYVILLE

for­mer Wood­lands de­vel­op­ment on Coudon Boule­vard orig­i­nally promised an en­ter­tain­ment cen­ter, in­clud­ing a movie the­ater, but that project col­lapsed in 2008.

As an en­ter­prise zone, the 41-acre tract is now el­i­gi­ble for tax breaks from the town, the county and the state for a light in­dus­trial project.

“I’m not nec­es­sar­ily cer­tain I want light in­dus­trial there,” Linkey said, adding it is too close to res­i­den­tial neigh­bor­hoods. “I’m afraid if we get light in­dus­trial, we won’t be able to do any­thing else.”

She also voiced con­cern that an in­dus­trial site would change the sur­round­ing com­mu­nity.

The com­mis­sion­ers had tabled the orig­i­nal en­ter­prise zone mea­sure in Oc­to­ber to give them­selves time to con­sider in­clud­ing re­quests to add other prop­er­ties to the des­ig­na­tion, in­clud­ing Wood­lands. How­ever, on Tues­day night, the board voted to re­move the ta­ble and ap­prove the mea­sure as orig­i­nally in­tro­duced.

The Ce­cil County Coun­cil still has to ap­prove the des­ig­na­tion, some­thing that will likely not hap­pen un­til next year.

Per­ryville Out­lets closed Oct. 1. Over the past decade, the cen­ter had de­graded phys­i­cally and dropped from 45 stores to just one in its fi­nal days. While the prop­erty is re­port­edly up for sale, it has not changed hands since be­ing pur­chased in 2007 for al­most $7.4 mil­lion.

Mayor Jim Eber­hardt and Com­mis­sion­ers Robert Ashby and Alan Fox voted in fa­vor of the mea­sure. Com­mis­sioner Ray Ryan was ab- sent from the meet­ing.

In cast­ing her dis­sent­ing vote, Linkey noted she is not against the des­ig­na­tion it­self.

“I did it for IKEA,” she said, re­fer­ring to the vote that added that prop­erty to the des­ig­na­tion.

CE­CIL WHIG FILE PHOTO

The prop­erty that was Per­ryville Out­lets has been des­ig­nated by town of­fi­cials as an en­ter­prise zone, mean­ing the new de­vel­oper would be el­i­gi­ble for tax breaks.

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