PERRY HALL, MD — The day after developers presented Perry Hall residents with their plans for a 317-home community on the Gerst farm property, Councilman David Marks has rejected the proposal in its current form. He issued a statement saying that he had heard from the community about the development and was also concerned.
Elm Street proposed building 138 villas, 64 luxury townhouses and 115 townhouses on the 48-acre property. While the developers said they planned to market the property to those 55 and up, there were no restrictions in place that would ensure the homes would be for older adults who would not necessarily bring more children to already overcrowded schools.
"I share the community's concerns about school overcrowding and the overall density of this development," Marks said in a statement.

Marks said he has asked the developer to provide a "better plan for the property" that "reflects the concerns" residents raised at Thursday night's community input meeting in White Marsh.
Specifically, the councilman said he is asking the developers to do the following:

  • Reduce the proposed number of homes to include "far fewer units"
  • Add deed restrictions so housing marketed as 55-plus may only be owned by older adults
  • Dedicate a large section of the property near the Honeygo Village Center to public parkland to be given to Baltimore County

"In 2016, I downzoned this property to allow for more time for Honeygo Elementary School and the new northeastern middle school to be built," Marks said.
At the community meeting Thursday, the PTO president of Honeygo Elementary said that the new school was nearing capacity, and the feeder for the proposed development was Chapel Hill Elementary, which was over capacity.

​"I would like to thank the residents of Perry Hall who passionately voiced their perspective on this development," Marks said. "I will continue to look out for their interests.


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Ground was broken on LENNAR HOME’S STRAWBRIDGE COMMONS almost two years ago, yet, to-date, they have still not sold out. In fact many of the homes have been released to local Realtors to help sell the inventory of completed homes that still sit empty. Adding over 300 more homes will only flood an already saturated Perry Hall townhome market which will hurt existing owner’s property values.

In Order to Keep our Comunity Safe, Schools Not Over Crowded, 
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We are a large group of Perry Hall residents working together to ensure responsible and sustainable real estate development as it relates to the former Gerst Farm property.  While we understand that the land in Perry Hall is desirable and we certainly want people to be a part of our great community, it is imperative that the developers, builders, and elected officials realize how a high-density townhome development will affect the safety of our children, overcrowd our schools while placing unmanageable stress on our community services and the environment.

Say NO to Elm Street’s high-density development at Gerst farm.

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Economic impact in an already ​saturated real estate market

Councilman David Marks said he is asking for changes to the proposed development near the Honeygo Village Center.

By Elizabeth Janney, Patch Staff 
Feb 7, 2020 6:06 pm ET

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A high-density development will add to the existing problem of school overcrowding
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Increased traffic will directly affect the safety of our children

Last year Councilman David Marks addressed the Honeygo Village Homeowner’s Association meeting at the Perry Hall library. During this meeting Councilman Marks expressed how important it was to him that any development of the Gerst farm would be single-level, low rise senior housing. He shared with residents that he would see that any development plans would include a large amount of green space for walking trails, bike paths and even natural fences to serve as visual and acoustic barriers.  Councilman Marks assured residents during this meeting that he was opposed to any more traditional, high-density townhome communities. He even expressed his dismay with the recent addition of the high-density apartment complex being constructed on Cowenton road. What changed? Elm Street states that they “intend to market 202 of the home to resident 55 and older.” This is VERY DIFFERENT then Councilman Mark’s promise of senior housing and his concerns about a traditional, high-density development.

People move to Perry Hall because of the quality of our schools. Currently schools in our area are at capacity; Perry Hall Middle school is overcrowded, currently with 2200 students enrolled. As it is now, a host of temporary office trailers litter the parking lot to accommodate the overflow of students. New schools need to be built and open BEFORE any ground is broken on the Gerst farm development. 

We'd like to thank Councilman David Marks for his service ad support of the Perry Hall Community, and his continued efforts to promote 'smart' development in our community.  The KeepGerstGreen Board of Directors

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Speeding has become a major problem in our area. Cars have been clocked at speeds in excess of 47 mph on Scott Moore Way and over 60 mph on Honeygo Blvd. To date, Baltimore County and our elected officials have yet to implement additional traffic calming or speed reduction measures. Every day our children are crossing busy roads to get to their bus stops. Adding 300 homes on a 47-acre parcel of land will only make this problem worse.  300 new homes mean approximately 600 more cars on our streets.    How can they expect to add an additional 600 more cars to our neighborhood streets while keeping our children safe? If this proposed high-density development becomes a reality, it will only be a matter of time before we have a tragedy on our hands.

Councilman Marks Rejects Gerst Farm Proposal

KeepGerstGreen.org   info@KeepGerstGreen.org
Our mission is to work together with neighboring associations to promote the responsible and sustainable development of Gerst Farm. 

We seek modifications to the proposed PUD plan.