Howard County has purchased Camp Ilchester in Ellicott City and to preserve it as open space as part of the county’s parks and recreation system.

County Executive Calvin Ball announced the signing of a letter of intent to complete the sale of the nearly 21-acre camp from the Girl Scouts of Central Maryland for $6 million, subject to an approved appropriation by the Howard County Council. Ball included $6 million for the purchase in his proposed fiscal 2023 capital budget, which is scheduled to be voted on by the County Council on May 25.

The letter of intent states that the property will no longer be marketed for sale and lists the steps for this final sale. Howard County intends to preserve Camp Ilchester as green space, keeping up to 105 housing units out of the development pipeline and utilizing the property to expand recreational program offerings to residents across the county and state.

Potential uses of the camp could include sports programs, outdoor adventure camps, active aging activity and a nature center with nature-based educational programming.