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Board of Ed Again Approves Mays Chapel Park As Site for New School

The decision comes after a contentious battle between area residents concerning the construction of a 700-seat elementary school.

The Baltimore County Board of Education again voted unanimously to approve the construction of a 700-seat elementary school at Mays Chapel Park.

"I feel that my interest must lie primarily with the students of Baltimore County," said board President Larry Schmidt, a Mays Chapel resident, ahead of the vote. "I frankly don't know when a gathering of little children to learn has come to be such a perceived threat to one's way of life."

The school is intended to alleviate overcrowding issues at elementary schools along the York Road corridor.

Opponents of the project, primarily senior residents living in a condo community close to the site, argued that the school would bring about issues including traffic and environmental concerns.

The Baltimore County Council unanimously voted in favor of a resolution on Jan. 23 approving the swap of a 10-acre wooded area of the Mays Chapel Park property and the adjacent 10-acre property made up of ballfields that is owned by the Baltimore County Public Schools system.

The Mays Chapel site was initially approved by the Baltimore County Board of Education last year. The state board of education, however, sent the process back for a second hearing after it ruled that the county board violated state law pertaining to legal notice requirements for the March 19, 2012 site selection hearing.

"As board president, I take ultimate responsibility for that failure," Schmidt said.

The state Department of Natural Resources must also approve the deal because of open space easements on the county's parcel. Those easements are expected to be transferred over to the new parcel.

Patch editors Bryan Sears and Nick DiMarco contributed to this report.

james smith February 08, 2013 at 03:36 PM
I believe you are mistaken. Please correct me if I am wrong. The school board did not buy the land 20 years ago to build a school. Baltimore County Parks and Recreation owned the land and operated it as a park for many years. Recently the Baltimore County Board of Education swapped another parcel of land that they owned with the Department of Parks and Recreation to get this land to build a school. The people who moved to this area over the past two decades saw a park, and had no reason to believe that anything else other than a park would be there. This parcel was a real park, with park benches and a gazebo, not just a vacant field or woods owned by Parks and Recreation. There is a law in Baltimore County that requires that the county provide a certain number of acres of parkland for every thousand residents of the county. Once land becomes a park, it remains a park because of this law and the growing population. The people who moved to the area saw the park, and had no reason to believe that anything else would be built there because of this law. The park may well have been one of the factors that made them want to move there. I do not live in or own property in the area, but I beleive that the county government has been very unfair and deceiving to the area residents.
Dennis King February 08, 2013 at 03:59 PM
Allow me to correct you Mr. Smith. What you may observe to be one plot of landd is actually two. In approximately 1986, 10 acres of the 20 acre site were deeded to BCPS for a future school; the remaining 10 acres were deeded to the County as open space. You can verify this with the Land Records. This was before a single shovel-full of dirt was dug for the construction. Additionally, I have ADC maps going back to the early 90s that show this site as the future Mays Chapel Elementary School. Almost everyone who lives in that area could have looked at the map at the time they bought their property and seen that a school was to be built on that site. Anyone who exercised reasonable diligence would have been aware of that potential. Those who didn't should, as stated above, blame themselves. In order to address the concerns of some of the area residents, BCPS agreed to certain location changes for the school. In order to accomodate those changes, BCPS needed to swap its portion of the property with the portion of the property held by Recreation and Parks as open space.
john sullivan February 08, 2013 at 06:00 PM
"DAGNEY" (???) WE HAVE SPENT HOURS RESEARCHING THIS LUDICROUS PROPOSAL. SO BEFORE YOU COMMENT MAYBE YOU SHOULD HAVE CHECKED ALL OF THE RESEARCH, STATISTICS, DATA, ETC. LET ME REPEAT THAT .... CHECK ALL OF THE FACTS IN DETAIL. WE BLAME THE SECRET, INCORRECT INFO & PROCESS OF THE BOARD OF ED. & KING kamenetz WHO TRIED TO "ZIP" IT THRU WITHOUT OUR KNOWLEDGE (UNTIL IT WAS LEAKED).
C. McMahon February 08, 2013 at 06:39 PM
When you win it's "justice served", when you lose it's a "conspiracy". Right, Sully?
john sullivan February 09, 2013 at 04:16 AM
C.M. LOST CAUSE TRYING TO INFORM YOU. ZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Dagney Taggert February 11, 2013 at 07:06 PM
Mr. Sullivan, Screaming at people in all caps doesn't make anyone change their point of view. I've lived in Mays Chapel for 14 years. I've seen huge amount of growth; new development, more traffic, more noise, new stop lights and more pollution. I've chalked it up to an increase in the county's population. I have two children that attend Pinewood Elementary and I'm hoping they will get into the new school. Whether you like it or not the school will built.
Steve February 11, 2013 at 07:14 PM
They should have been concerned about the zoning in Mays Chapel when the County allowed Keelty to put up those ugly Commie Blocks.
TT McBean February 11, 2013 at 07:35 PM
It's a new elementary school, and it's going in Mays Chapel where it's been planned for years. Just because they didn't completely change the plans for you JOHN SULLIVAN doesn't mean that you were totally ignored. Board of Ed and County putting it where they determined it will best benefit the area. I get tired of the old folks. Being against anything new. Bet if it was a new Senior Center you'd be all for it.
john sullivan February 12, 2013 at 03:32 AM
T T I DON'T HAPPEN TO BE AN "OLD FOLK". INTERESTING THAT SEVERAL YEARS AGO THE BD. OF ED. WROTE THAT THE MAYS CHAPEL SITE WOULD NOT SERVE IT'S PURPOSE AS A SCHOOL !!! HELLO !!!! "YOU'RE TIRED OF OLD FOLKS .... BEING AGAINST ANYTHING NEW". LIKE I CARE. QUITE A CHIP VS. ELDERLY. UNFORTUNATE PROBLEM !!!! FYI... THERE ARE RESIDENTS OF M.C. WHO ARE IN ARE IN THEIR 30'S, 40'S & 50'S BESIDES THE SENIORS. SHOULD BE FUN WHEN YOU ARE A SENIOR !!!!
john sullivan February 12, 2013 at 03:37 AM
"DAGNEY", USING ALL ONE CASING OF LETTERS IS MUCH EASIER & QUICKER ... HELLO ! SO IT'S NOT SCREAMING. QUITE SENSITIVE ARE WE? MAYBE THE SCHOOL WILL BE BUILT HERE ... & MAYBE IT WON'T. THE FIGHT IS NOT OVER YET. WE'LL SEE.
john sullivan February 12, 2013 at 03:41 AM
AGREE WITH YOU ON THE ZONING ISSUE. A "PUD" (PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT) IS AN EXCUSE FOR DEVELOPERS TO BYPASS MANY ZONING REGULATIONS. BUT " COMMIE BLOCKS" ?????????????
Ed February 12, 2013 at 04:58 AM
Sullivan, first of all, in the land of the Internet, all caps is considered shouting. Sorry you are too lazy to use the shift key. Second, you feel about this school the same way long time residents who lived west of I-83 felt when your stinking development was built in the first place. For many years that area was not open to water and sewer service until a certain developer wanted to build his massive development, which, by the way, is responsible for many students in the school system. Your beef should be with the developer that donated land for a school near property he wound up using for condos instead of donating it closer to the single family homes and townhomes that supply most of the school aged kids. The county would have to spends six or seven figures to buy land for a school elsewhere in the York Road corridor. That's why developers of large acreage are required to provide land for schools and recreation.
Ed February 12, 2013 at 05:00 AM
Sullivan, if you don't like the zoning of the neighborhood you live in, why in heaven's name did you move there?
john sullivan February 12, 2013 at 04:46 PM
ED. DUH, IF I KNEW ABOUT THE PROPOSED SCHOOL 2 YRS. AGO WHEN WE MOVED IN & THAT THERE WERE SO MANY BIGOTED AND/OR IMMATURE NEIGHBORS/SNOBS WE WOULD NOT HAVE MOVED HERE. KEELTY DID IT FOR A PURPOSE ... A GIVE & TAKE. "YOU LET ME DO THIS & I'LL GIVE YOU THIS". DID YOU MEAN THE REQUIRED LOCAL / ACTIVE/PASSIVE OPEN SPACE. "STINKING DEVELOPMENT" ? WHAT AN ADULT STATEMENT. YOU BORE ME.
john sullivan February 12, 2013 at 04:48 PM
G.A. OH, I DEFINITELY AM.
Steve February 12, 2013 at 05:13 PM
Yeah, Commie Blocks. Those buildings look like something you see in Eastern Europe.
Ed February 12, 2013 at 07:48 PM
Sullivan, the point is some people feel about the entire Mays Chapel development the same way that you feel about the school. Should have never been built. And as others have said, a school has been planned there for more than 20 years. Again, your issue is with your developer and your real estate agent, NOT the county of the BOE. And given you comments about the neighbors, you seem like a very bitter man.
Ed February 12, 2013 at 07:49 PM
...county OR the BOE.
john sullivan February 13, 2013 at 02:29 AM
"MR. ED" NO, MY COMMENTS ABOUT THE NEIGHBORS PERTAIN TO THOSE WHO'S PATCH COMMENTS WERE "STINKING SCHOOL", "UGLY COMMIE BLOCKS" , " TO LAZY ..... TO USE BOTH CASINGS", OLD PEOPLE ARE AGAINST EVERYTHING", ETC. ALL OF THOSE COMMENTS REALLY ADDRESS THE ISSUE DON'T THEY? NICE TRY "MR. ED"
john sullivan February 13, 2013 at 02:46 AM
TO ED, STEVE, TT & WHOMEVER : IF YOU ADD YOUR EMAIL I WILL GLADLY EMAIL YOU THE 1/24/04 RECOMMENDATION ABOUT THE FEASIBILITY OF A SCHOOL AT M.C. FROM PAM C. CARTER OF THE BD. OF ED. TO J.ROBERT HAINES, BD. OF ED ATTY. HINT ... NOT A GOOD RECOMMENDATION.
Dagney Taggert March 01, 2013 at 04:20 PM
JOHN SULLIVAN, I THINK I'D PRETTY SAFE IN SAYING THAT WE ALL TIRED OF LISTENING TO YOU RANT. YOU BORE US. WHY DON'T YOU JUST MOVE? LET ME GUESS, YOU BOUGHT YOUR CONDO AT THE HEIGHT OF THE HOUSING BOOM AND NOW YOU'RE UNDER WATER AND CAN'T GET OUT. AS I ALREADY STATED, YOU AND/OR YOUR REALTOR DIDN'T DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE WHEN YOU BOUGHT YOUR HOME AND YOU HAVE NO ONE TO BLAME BUT YOURSELF. FOR THE RECORD, I'M NOT TOO LAZY TO USE PROPER CASE; MY CAPS ARE SCREAMING AT YOU TO SHUT UP.
john sullivan March 01, 2013 at 06:01 PM
DAGMAR LET ME GUESS YOUR AGE ..... 16? CONFUSED,UNHAPPY,REBELLIOUS & DISGRUNTLED TEEN? "SHUT UP"..... WOULD YOU LIKE TO TRY??? SO GLAD YOUR NOT TOO LAZY. YOU'RE DULL & BORING. SIGNING OFF, WILL ONLY RESPOND TO EDUCATED RHETORIC.
Ed March 01, 2013 at 10:18 PM
I'm 55 years old, if that matters. I just deal in the facts and Dagney has the facts correct. He may be dull and boring; you are annoying. Call the Keelty company and complain to them. They are the cause of your heartache, not the BOE, not KK and not the county council.
john sullivan March 02, 2013 at 05:48 AM
MR. ED, NO, IT DOESN'T MATTER. AGAIN, READ MY TUESDAY, 2/12 9:46 P.M. COMMENT/INFO TO YOU (& 2 OTHERS) WHO APPARENTLY EITHER DO NOT WANT TO SEE THE MEMO OR HAVE A PROBLEM ABSORBING IT ...... CONCERNING THE BOARD'S OWN RESEARCH THAT M.C, WAS NOT A GOOD LOCATION FOR A SCHOOL. TO DATE I HAVE RECEIVED ZERO EMAILS. SO TALK ABOUT ANNOYING !
Ed March 02, 2013 at 02:17 PM
You honestly think I'm giving my e-mail address to a nut job who screams in all caps on here? No thanks, you are not to be trusted. Besides, any other site likely would require purchase of land in or near a residential area. I believe schools have been built on most of the previously identified school sites in the north-central section of the county. The whole idea behind keeping the land at Mays Chapel as open space was to have it available for a school site when needed. Now it's needed. As a taxpayer I do not want my money being used to purchase additional land when a site is already available. As I've said before, water and sewer should never have been extended west of I-83 along Padonia Road. It was, and the people that live there have to live with the fact that Keelty and the county planned for a school there as far back as the 1980s, in part because of the kids that Mays Chapel added to the school system. If that is a problem, you should not have moved there.
Ed March 02, 2013 at 02:27 PM
If MY age doesn't matter, why did you go out of your way to guess that Dagney was 16? What a tool.
john sullivan March 02, 2013 at 04:11 PM
YOU CERTAINLY HAVE A FIXATION WITH CAPITAL LETTERS & SCREAMING. PERHAPS YOU HAD A SAD CHILDHOOD. IN ANY CASE YOU CHOOSE TO REMAIN IGNORANT OF THE SUBJECT. LET ME REPEAT THAT. YOU CHOOSE TO REMAIN IGNORANT OF THE SUBJECT & ARE ARE AFRAID OF LEARNING THE 2004 FACTS. SO, "MR. ED" I AM NO LONGER WASTING MY TIME WITH A SAD SACK LIKE YOU. YOUR SAME OLD, SAME OLD REPETIONS ARE STALE. I WILL NO LONGER INTIMIDATE YOU. I HAVE MORE INTELLIGENT IMPORTANT THINGS TO DO. I HOPE YOU OVERCOME YOUR ILLNESS. GO SCREAM AT THE WALL. YOU HAVE MY PERMISSION TO USE CAPITAL LETTERS. SO LONG!
Ed March 03, 2013 at 03:21 AM
Sulli, it's not that I choose to remain ignorant of the 2004 report, its that I don't CARE about the 2004 report. You, apparently, choose to ignore the fact that before Baltimore County foolishly allowed water and sewer to be extended west of I-83 along Padonia Road, that area was sparsely populated and mostly rural open space. If Mays Chapel had never been built, there might not even be a need for another school in north-central Baltimore County. And by the way, for what its worth, I had a great childhood with great parents, great friends and a terrific education. :-)
Dagney Taggert March 04, 2013 at 03:39 PM
You know what Ed? This guy is a moron. He's insulted everyone who doesn't agree with his opinion. He resorts to name calling and bullying. Notice he's stopped mentioning all the 'facts' he's been trying to cram down everyone's throats. As for you John Sullivan, I'm a woman, I'm 45 years old, I've got two kids in Pinewood Elementary and I hope very much at least one of them will be attending the new school that will be built in May's Chapel. And by the way, since you're so busy telling everyone else how ignorant they are, you might want to Google Dagney Tagert. Maybe you'll learn something. I've had enough of this. I'm convinced you have nothing intelligent to add to this discussion.
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