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Court of Special Appeals Rules for University on Belward

November 22, 2013

To: Reporters, editors, producers; assignment desks
From: Dennis O’Shea
dro@jhu.edu | 443-997-9912 (o) | 410-499-7460 (m)

Ellen Poltilove
epoltil1@jhu.edu | 202-309-4736 (m)

A three-judge panel of the Maryland Court of Special Appeals has ruled that the university’s proposed development of the former Belward Farm in Montgomery County is in full compliance with the university’s agreement with its former owners and is not limited “in terms of scale or density or ownership structure.”

The court issued a unanimous opinion on Thursday affirming the November 2012 ruling of a Montgomery County Circuit Court judge. The appeals court ruled that “the operative contract frames [Johns] Hopkins’ development rights solely and unambiguously in terms of permissible uses.” It said that the contract “does not limit the scale or density of the development, nor preclude leasing.”

The Court of Special Appeals ruling is available here. The following statement may be attributed to Dennis O’Shea, spokesman for the university:

“Johns Hopkins is pleased that the position we have maintained throughout the case has been affirmed by the court. The university will develop the land in full compliance with its obligations under its agreement with Elizabeth Banks and her relatives. As we have always been, we are grateful to Miss Banks and her relatives.”


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