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25th Street Station’s foes lose on appeal

Several community activists who oppose the creation of a Walmart-centered development in Remington have lost another round in court.

Benn Ray, Brendan Coyne, Douglas M. Armstrong and Allen W. Hicks cannot sue over plans for the 25th Street Station project, the Court of Special Appeals held in three separate opinions issued late Wednesday.

The decisions affirmed rulings by two judges in Baltimore City Circuit Court.

In March, Judge Pamela White found that the four men lacked legal standing to sue the mayor and City Council over the Planned Unit Development because they had not shown it would affect them any more than it would the general public.

In May, Judge John P. Miller reached a similar conclusion in litigation that Ray and Coyne brought against the Baltimore City Planning Commission.

Plans call for 25th Street Station to be anchored by a 93,783-square-foot Walmart and a second “big-box” store. The Lowe’s home improvement chain withdrew as the second anchor in October, saying its decision was part of a major scale-back in locations in multiple states.

All told, the project by Rick Walker’s W.V. Urban Developments LLC expects to add 329,705 square feet and up to 90 residential units to the Remington and Huntington communities as well as 400 construction jobs and up to 750 full- and part-time jobs.

One comment

  1. Editor’s Note: After the story was published, we received the following comment from Jon Laria of Ballard Spahr LLP, which represents the appellees in the case:

    “We are gratified by the Court’s decision to affirm these dismissals, and by its strong language in doing so. The Court’s quick action confirms and validates our view that these appeals were frivolous and groundless from the start. Even with the Court’s quick action, it has been well over a year since the appeals were filed, and they have cost us precious time and money.

    25th Street Station is a huge investment in Baltimore and in an important City neighborhood, and the Court’s decision removes a major impediment to moving it forward. We are particularly grateful to our community partners who stood by us through the litigation, and to the City which worked with us to get these appeals dismissed. We hope the appellants will finally acknowledge how much the project benefits the community, and will now support its construction and completion.”