The Rockland City Council will hold off on the possible sale of a vacant lot adjacent to the fire station.

The proposed sale was put before the council at its Monday, Feb. 5, agenda-setting meeting.

The property is a quarter acre purchased by the city in December 1999 from Howard Walen for $53,500. City officials at the time said the land was being bought in case Rockland expanded its public safety building that in 1999 housed both the fire and police departments.

The city had hired an architect in 1989, who concluded an additional 8,000 square feet of space was needed. The city, however, did not move ahead with an expansion.

A committee was formed in 2000 to look at a possible expansion. But by 2003, the City Council had leased and then purchased a portion of 1 Park Drive from MBNA to house the police department.

John Schramm has expressed interest in buying the land from the city. Schramm owns the adjacent property at 104 Park St. that had been Schofield's Home Furnishing Center.

Rockland Code Enforcement Officer John Root said Schramm wants to put businesses into the Park Street space. While no plans have been offered for the land, additional parking was mentioned as a possible use for any businesses that move into the Park Street location.

Councilor Ed Glaser said he would be concerned about losing parking next to the fire station.

Councilor Lisa Westkaemper said during her discussion with the administration of the fire department, she was told that the building needs significant work and she wanted to hold off on the sale of the lot.

The fire station was built in 1971.

The issue could come up again at the March council meeting, when more information is provided to the council. Councilor Adam Ackor said he would support putting the property up for sale.

The vacant lot was last occupied by the Finast Kind Market, had earlier been a refrigeration company, and in the 1950s was the location of the First National Bank of Rockland.