By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun
7:06 PM EDT, September 15, 2011
Under Armour is hoping to double the size of its Baltimore headquarters to accommodate additional employees, a retail store and a company museum.
The sports apparel company wants to build an additional 400,000 square feet at Tide Point, an office complex in the Locust Point neighborhood that the firm, which had rented there for years, bought earlier this year.
The company envisions a 20,000-square-foot store opening in 2013, with offices and the museum to follow. Underground and surface parking are also planned.
The company's plans were first reported by the Baltimore Business Journal, which noted that the Locust Point community is concerned about the speed at which Under Armour hopes to move.
J. Scott Plank, executive vice president of business development at Under Armour, said Thursday that the company needed additional space. He said the firm was already renting a building next to its headquarters and would have to relocate some workers by the end of 2012 if it couldn't move rapidly to expand.
Under Armour also leases part of Tide Point to other businesses — including Advertising.com and Mercy Health Services — and might have to ask those firms to move if no new space is constructed, Plank said.
Under Armour employs nearly 5,000 people worldwide, up from 3,000 at the end of 2009. About 1,200 employees will work at the headquarters complex by the end of the year, Plank said.
Besides more space, the company needs a store at its headquarters, Scott Plank said. He said the top question he hears from customers and others is, "Hey, where is your store?"
The planned museum would help people understand the firm's culture and milestone moments, from the first T-shirt to the first ad, he said.
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