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Former Perry Hall 'Poor Little Rich Girl' To Be Demolished, Protest Planned

New development may come to the corner of Belair Road and Joppa Road in Perry Hall.

UPDATE (Dec. 4, 1:57 p.m.)—Demolition of the former Poor Little Rich Girl bridal shop has been delayed at least two weeks to allow the structure to be bought or moved.

Find updated information in the article, 'Poor Little Rich Girl' Demolition Delayed After Protest Planned.

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UPDATE (Dec. 4, noon)—Some community members plan to protest the demolition outside the structure on Wednesday evening. Mark Patro wrote a blog post on Patch to promote the event. 

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UPDATE (Dec. 3, 2:44 p.m.)—The former location of the Poor Little Rich Girl formal wear shop—an aging house at 9010 Belair Rd.—could be demolished this week. 

"The community deserves better than what it is today. We want to be good neighbors, so it needs to come down," said George Perdikakes, who manages the property owned by Koros LLC. 

Perdikakes called the house "ugly" and an "eyesore," and said its demolition is in direct response to a request from County Councilman David Marks last summer. 

The tear-down may occur on either Wednesday or Thursday of this week, pending clearance by Baltimore Gas and Electric Company. Demolition, which includes asbestos removal, will likely cost around $25,000, Perdikakes said. 

Before falling into disrepair, the structure held an iconic place in the heart of Perry Hall. 

Poor Little Rich Girl—at the time, a popular consignment shop—was sold to Linda Fike more than 20 years ago. Fike discontinued consignment more than 10 years ago to focus on formal wear and bridal gowns. In 2010, she moved the shop to an office space across the street at 9105 Belair Rd. 

Fike said she plans to retire at the end of the year, and expects to either sell or close the shop. 

While the former Poor Little Rich Girl location shares a property area with Double-T Diner at 4140 Joppa Rd., the diner is expected to remain as is, Perdikakes said.

There are currently no plans for a new structure at 9010 Belair Rd., although property owners are considering several options, Perdikakes added. 

"Last summer, I requested that this structure either be cleaned up, repaired, or demolished. Many residents had complained to me about its appearance," Marks stated in an email to Patch.

The house and diner are included in Perry Hall's commercial revitalization district.

Approved in May 2011, the zone extends along Belair Road, from Blakeley Avenue in the south to Minte Drive in the north. It also includes Joppa Road, between Seven Courts Drive and Belair Road, as well as Ebenezer Road, from Belair Road to Yvonne Avenue.

Businesses in the zone are eligible for special financing, free design services and other forms of county assistance.

New structures in the zone are also subject to Baltimore County Design Review Panel standards, as required by legislation approved in August.

"The legislation I sponsored last summer will require better design standards at the site, and I've already made it clear to the owner that I would like this corner significantly upgraded," Marks stated. 

Which aging structures in Perry Hall are most in need of a tear-down and rebuild? Tell us in the comments. 

Nicole K. December 05, 2012 at 12:25 PM
Doesn't seem like you read my comment correctly, Brandon. Anyway, perhaps you have the funds to buy this property from the owner and rehabilitate it. It's been sitting there for years waiting for someone just like you. There are several others in the community as well that I hope you can afford to renovate.
John Doe December 05, 2012 at 02:56 PM
Some of us have only lived here < 5 years, so we don't know all of the past protests.
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 04:42 PM
I believe that house is slated for demolition...isn't there a development going there?
Lynn Schafer December 05, 2012 at 04:52 PM
This may be "Monday morning quarterbacking" , but the owner rented this property to a business, which made the owner a landlord. Why wasn't he held accountable for properly maintaining the property for the past 20 years?
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 04:56 PM
I'm sorry, but a protest to have someone else "Save this House" seems a bit much....why not instead try to pool together resources and purchase it and save it yourself?...unless you have tried and there is more to the story than we are told...
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 04:58 PM
I feel like Perry Hall loses it's "Community" feel, when certain groups of residents try to force others to do what the THEY want with others private property, against their wishes
Gneee Schafer December 05, 2012 at 05:13 PM
Clara Schafer Gerst raised her family in this home. She lived in the home until she passed away. The owner has left this home to ruins and has not invested one cent for the upkeep. This home is most definitely a historic site and should not be destroyed. There is not much left of Perry Hall to show how it was in the horse and buggy days. This home was sitting on property behind it and to the south and west of it. It was a farm in the early 1920's and 1930. The Schafer family cultivated the land and lived off the land for many years. Lets gather together and fight the only last thing that reflects the Schafer heritage.
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 05:26 PM
But perhaps the possible income in rent wasn't enough to justify the expense of upkeep and/or renovation...I seriously doubt, that with the lack of parking and difficult access, that many businesses would have much success in that building... without a successful business, it's hard to pay the amount of rent that would be necessary to maintain such an old building... simple fact is that this property has MORE value without this structure there...is it sad to see old buildings disappear, sure...but nothing last forever
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 05:34 PM
Just one question, if this property holds so much family value and heritage....why did the Schafer family sell it?
John Doe December 05, 2012 at 05:51 PM
Heather S - I know you are part of the solution - please don't think my comments are a personal attack on you. I am thankful for your involvement.
Mark Patro December 05, 2012 at 05:57 PM
Mr. Redmer, there is more than one way to quantify "value."
John Doe December 05, 2012 at 06:16 PM
Mark - great point. Ask people to define 'rich' and they go right to money. I have a job, a family, and am healthy...try putting a 'value' on that. Also, this would be a great government building for 'downtown' Perry Hall. It would be in the center of the revitalization project, have historic features, and I could walk to it to talk to our governing body.
Evets December 05, 2012 at 06:39 PM
I am all for protests, but why the need to call it a 'peaceful' protest? Is there a possibility of violence over the demolition of this structure?
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 06:50 PM
The Spamer Homestead sit at the end of Oak Park Drive...the Original Structure is still there, built in the early 1800's... It was the former estate of John Fox http://www.mdihp.net/dsp_county.cfm?search=county&criteria1=R&criteria2=BA&criteria3=&id=3365&viewer=true
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 06:56 PM
Yes Mark...and I am referring to the implied "Sentimental" value... There are Schafer family members posting here that seem to suggest that a private landowner should lose their property rights because a structure has sentimental value to their family...my question simply is, if it was so important to the family, why and under what circumstances was it sold?
Mark Patro December 05, 2012 at 06:59 PM
"sentimental" is your word and your spin.
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Mr. Doe, Do you have ANY idea the costs associated with restoring this structure for government use? Personally I don't want my tax dollars going towards it
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 07:04 PM
Ok Mr. Patro, Then in the spirit of debate, how about you stop being so vague and explain exactly what it is that I said that you object to...
Mark Patro December 05, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Well first of all there would be cultural value. There would also be aesthetic value. Sentiment might be there for some people. There is the "town center" appeal vs the "main street" appeal. Are we trying to turn Perry hall into Ritchie Highway?
John Doe December 05, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Steve - I know plenty about the costs. So demolish it, put in a Rite-Aid or liquor store. Enjoy your 'downtown' of a liquor store, gas station, 7-11, and all-night diner - this would definitely decrease robberies, car accidents, and violence. Enjoy, Perry Hall residents and surrounding businesses.
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Ok good, So explain to me what Cultural and/or aesthetic value this derelict property holds? yes it is old, but that doesn't make it cultural... and even if restored i fail to see the aesthetic value... this building nor the architecture of it are not exceptionally beautiful... and as for the "appeal" of Perry Hall, I'm not sure what you are looking at...I LOVE this neighborhood, born and raised here... but there is nothing about the Bel Air Rd corridor that I find pleasing to the eyes...it is a hodge-podge collection of old houses that have been converted into mostly unsuccessful businesses, many of which are in disrepair and not many of which have any real aesthetic appeal... In my opinion, preserving this even older and more run down structure would not improve in any way the cultural or aesthetic value of my beloved Perry Hall
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 07:43 PM
So Mr. Doe, In your view, who should pay for the preservation and restoration of this property?
Honeygo Hal December 05, 2012 at 07:47 PM
John Doe - The property owner has the greatest ability to control the future of the property - So you (or someone else) should pony up and become the property owner. If not, you have zoning laws and local covenants to fall back on.
Mark Patro December 05, 2012 at 07:58 PM
Steve, the point behind this exercise is to engage the community. The "tear it down before they know anything is going on here," is the problem. The what you personally find beautiful, aesthetic or cultural is all a matter of opinion. I have one and so do you. Any many other have might disagree with both of us. Demeaning each others opinion is not my goal here. I'm not interested in that kind of dialog. How long you have lived here matters little to me. we both live hear at the moment. This should matter because we are both engaged in this community. Secondly, we elected Councilman Mark's to do a job. And I will say he is doing it rather well even though he and I do not always agree. And finally there IS history here and there is also value in having mixed scale commercial properties along Belair Road.
Steve Redmer December 05, 2012 at 08:15 PM
Mark, That is a very fair argument and stance... I personally don't like to see historical structures get demolished...There are have been many historic homes and buildings in Perry Hall that have disappeared in my time here that I feel have had both more historical value and more aesthetic value than this property we speak of...It was sad to see them go, however it boils down to money... someone, whether a person, an organization or a government entity is required to step forth and pay for such structures to be preserved and restored. That being, in any preservation action, the current owner of the property must be compensated, whether by mutually agreed upon sale, or compensation for loss if done by government action... If you, or any organization wishes to step forward and pay market value and preserve/restore this particular structure, I applaud you for your effort....however, in this particular case, I FIRMLY oppose any government action to strip the current owner of their property rights OR to fund any such venture through County or State funds...there have been structures in Perry Hall that I would support government intervention....but in this case I fail to see the Cultural/Historic/Aesthetic or economic value in Government action
Mark Patro December 05, 2012 at 08:25 PM
I haven't read all the posts on here. But I have not suggested any government money be used on this project. There have been a few responses asking about who to contact in order to make an offer. I can direct anyone I haven't already heard from. But I have to hear from those people interested in order to make something happen here. I agree that this corner greatly affects the appearance of Perry Hall, and I am not suggesting it stay in its dilapidated condition.
Paul Amirault December 05, 2012 at 08:31 PM
Mark, what you are apparently promoting is an attempt to force your beliefs (and others who think like you) on someone else"s lawful property decisions because you believe it is for the greater good. That is never acceptable to me unless the property owner is properly compensated. Do you see that? I question the validity of that argument in this or many other examples. I am always cautious of those that come forward for the greater good.
David Marks December 05, 2012 at 09:10 PM
Lynn, I provided it to Mark Patro.
Andrew December 06, 2012 at 04:43 PM
I still believe this structure should be teared down, and no doubt it will, so instead of fighting to keep it maybe those should just focus on a De-construction method be applied to the tear down. This technique removes anything of value instead of sending it to a landfill. This seems like a much more realistic argument/request to make as the impact on the property owner is relatively small.
Gomer Pyle December 06, 2012 at 07:02 PM
Remove the hazardous waste from the building and lets have the 1st Annual Perry Hall Community bonfire. Next year we can move the event to Middle River. There are pleny of dilapidated structures there that could be used.

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