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Maryland Transportation Authority could spend $4M to renovate headquarters

The Maryland Transportation Authority, the agency that oversees the state’s toll facilities, may spend $4 million to renovate its Southeast Baltimore headquarters.

maryland transportation authority headquartersThe authority’s headquarters, at 2310 Broening Highway, near the Port of Baltimore, is in need of major renovations on the second floor, where authority officials want to move employees currently working in leased office space at a building next door, within the Point Breeze office complex.

The authority is spending almost $29,000 a month on space leased at 2400 Broening Highway and wants to move employees into the headquarters building. The renovation must first be approved by the transportation authority’s board, and then by the state Board of Public Works.

The board, composed of Gov. Martin O’Malley, Comptroller Peter Franchot and Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp, meets Wednesday.

About 150 transportation employees — those in the finance, information technology and procurement offices — could move to the second floor space once it is completed. The Police Special Operations Division, currently located in the leased space, will be moved to the authority-owned Francis Scott Key Bridge Administration Building.

The transportation authority will also move some employees to 2340 Broening Highway, an office building it already owns.

The renovation, if approved, would be paid for through money collected at tolls, such as those on the Inter-County Connector, on Interstate 95 and at the Baltimore harbor tunnels.

John Sales, a transportation authority spokesman, said the idea was to cut costs and bring more employees under one roof. The second floor of the building has been vacant for years, since the Maryland Port Administration moved out of the space.

“We’re going to use that vacant space, it’ll allow us to have our employees here,” Sales said. “Some of the board members are, I’m sure, already aware of it. I don’t foresee there being a problem there.”

The transportation authority selected Baltimore-based Tech Contracting Co. Inc. from a field of 13 companies, 12 of which are based in Maryland. If both boards approve the selection, Tech Contracting could start working as early as November and be finished in late summer.

The work expected to be completed is extensive. Sales said HVAC and plumbing systems will both be replaced and repairs made to the floors and lighting. Some roof repairs may be necessary, too.