Saturday, June 19, 2021

The Real Deal

Almost as soon as I wrote this wishful vignette for my April first blog post, I realized how truly “not the news” it was.

Not the News”, April 1, 2021

County Executive Calvin Ball announces the repurposing of the Wilkins Rogers Mill in Oella as a huge, mixed-use project which will combine housing at a variety of price points, a grocery with pharmacy, an urgent care facility, and an elementary, middle, and high school. The surrounding parking lots will be replaced with playgrounds, playing fields, pervious pavement parking, and generous tree-planting. Local advocacy groups will be meeting to find something to object to.

The problem, of course, is that the building is actually located in Baltimore County. Oops. I got a bit carried away there. Setting aside that painful lack of knowledge on my part, let’s take a look at the real news about the Wilkins Rogers Mill.

Developer seeking to restore Oella flour mill into 190-unit apartment complex with retail on ground floorCameron Goodnight, Baltimore Sun

I’d like to point out that my fantasy proposal for this site was far more interesting, but what’s on the table shares some of the same components: housing and retail. 

Plans call for the Frederick Road property to transition into a multipurpose structure known as Ellicott Mill, housing 190 apartment units, retail space, a restaurant and a museum.

Ooh. A museum. Now why didn’t I think of that?

The project is in its early stages and the developer is David Tufaro of Terra Nova Ventures LLC. You may recall that Tufaro is a former candidate for Mayor of Baltimore. You get extra cool points if you remember that I wrote about him in the early days of the pandemic. I wonder how many folks took his advice to heart?

Who would even have thought that your neighborhood dry cleaner would be suffering? Mine is down 70% in business. My advice: While working from home, please dress as though you were going to work.

I wonder if his plans for the Wilkins Rogers Mill include a dry cleaner?


Out and about:

Bike Around Downtown Columbia event by CA with DTC and the Merriweather District, Saturday and Sunday. Block Party Saturday from 11-3.

Farmer’s Market at Clarksville Commons, 10-2

Juneteenth Pop-up Cookout by The 3rd, Downtown Columbia, and Jamila Wright-Jones, 2-4

Columbia Jazz Band: A Swingin’ Evening at the Chrysalis, 5-7

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