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Thurmont receives grant for building renovations

Stephanie Mlot
Frederick News Post

(2/17) The remodeling of Thurmont's vacant library building on Water Street just got a second wind. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development announced Wednesday more than $1 million in Community Legacy Program awards, including a $75,000 grant for the renovation of Thurmont's Main Street headquarters.

The money will be used for the town's restoration of the historic building, previously occupied by the Thurmont Branch Library. The library moved out in 2008, when its building was opened on Moser Road.

According to Thurmont Commissioner John Kinnaird, the aged Main Street building's basic structure needs repair.

In fall 2010, the town received a $150,000 Community Legacy Program grant, used last year to purchase the 1874 building.

The new grant will be spent on renovations to remodel the building into a Main Street headquarters and office and meeting space.

Kinnaird is confident the $75,000 will pay for all of the building's structural renovations, leaving it in usable condition. Any additional renovations and funding that may be required will be addressed as necessary, he wrote in an email.

When the U.S. 15 Mason Dixon Discovery welcome center closed in 2009, Thurmont officals kept their fingers crossed for a local arena to offer advertising. The center is poised to reopen this year, but the new Main Street center could still fill a hyper-local need in Thurmont.

Kinnaird expressed gratitude Thursday for the state's assistance in not only purchasing the building, but also working to preserve it. Working on the state's budget cycles, the town does not yet have an idea of when work may begin.

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