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New showcase for Negro Leagues museum in works

By opening day next spring — now there’s a thought for a cold November day — the Hubert V. “Bert” Simmons Museum of Negro Leagues Baseball Inc. will have relocated to permanent digs at the new Metro Centre development in Owings Mills.

The museum is being renamed. It had been called the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum of Maryland Inc. and over the years its 1,000 relics had moved to various locations in Baltimore County, including the Lochearn Presbyterian Church. County officials offered a more lasting home for the historic memorabilia and objects in the new branch of the Baltimore County Public Library earlier this year.

Simmons threw a mean curve ball as a pitcher for the Baltimore Elite Giants in the 1950s. He died in July 2009 and his career was honored this week in a ceremony hosted by County Executive Kevin Kamenetz. He was co-president of the Negro Leagues museum at the time of his death, his obituary said.

CBRE recently helped in an expansion of office and clinic space for Eye Consultants of Maryland at the McDonough Crossroads in Owings Mills.

The facility is located at 21 Crossroads Drive, where it has been for the past two decades. The expansion will allow the practice to double its size to 7,827 square feet. McDonough Crossroads is located on 2.43 acres and holds more than 61,000 square feet of office space.

“This premier asset and its location, near both Sinai and Northwest Hospitals and along a dynamic corridor of hotel, dining, entertainment, and business destinations, presents an ideal off-campus medical office environment,” Kim Penny, a CBRE first vice president, said in a statement.

The oldest structure on the Towson campus of the Sheppard Pratt Health System is about to get a celebrity close-up.

The 153-year-old gatehouse at the Charles Street entrance to the suburban health center will be in the spotlight on Wednesday, when $1.5 million in restorations recently completed there will be unveiled.

The gatehouse, Sheppard Pratt said in a release, “is recognized for its rich history and iconic stature in the mental health community.” It was designed and built in the 1860s.

Work on the Gatehouse was funded through donations from the Maryland Historic Trust, the France-Merrick Foundation, the Wilbur family, the Middendorf Foundation Inc. and the Charitable Marine Society. Other private donors also contributed. Lewis Contractors did the work and KANN Partners served as the architect for the project.

“Preserving the history of Sheppard Pratt and fulfilling the vision of founder Moses Sheppard to provide quality care to individuals with mental illness is of the utmost importance to our health system,” Steven S. Sharfstein, president and chief executive officer of Sheppard Pratt, said in a statement.

“As the first visual representation of our campus, we are elated to reveal the restored Gatehouse and are proud as it continues to welcome everyone who enters.”

Back in Baltimore County, County Executive Kamenetz helped to open a $23 million single-stream recycling plant and transfer station in Cockeysville this week. The station will process residential mixed paper, bottles and cans.

County officials predict that up to $2 million in revenue a year will be realized at the facility, where 35 tons of single-stream recyclables will be processed each hour, for a total annual sorting capacity of more than 70,000 tons of recyclables. The plant will also create 13 new jobs.

“Recycling is the right thing to do both for the environment and for the bottom line,” Kamenetz said in a statement. “This new facility allows Baltimore County to manage our solid waste stream ourselves, and to sort our recyclables locally, keeping the full economic benefit for our taxpayers.”

The plant is 55,000 square feet and its equipment includes 86 conveyor belts and six sorting screens.

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