"It's going to grow and create a really stellar workforce," Brady said.

Development in Owings Mills was one of the most controversial topics when the County Council reviewed zoning last year.

County leaders had hoped the project could go hand-in-hand with the revamping of the Owings Mills Mall, the long-struggling complex next door.

A $65 million redevelopment of the mall was announced in late 2011, when Kimco Realty and General Growth Properties announced they had formed a partnership to turn it around.

Since then, the mall's status is unclear. A Kimco executive said a Wegmans grocery store announced for the Foundry Row shopping center planned by Greenberg Gibbons at the former Solo Cup site would hurt the mall's chances of a successful comeback.

Companies tied to Brown and other developers funded a referendum effort that would have overturned retail zoning for Foundry Row, among other properties. The local elections board rejected the petitions, but referendum supporters have appealed to Circuit Court.

Kamenetz said the mall is "at a standstill," but he hopes the Metro Centre's debut sparks progress at the mall.

"The momentum for the Metro Centre will clearly reverberate to the mall, and hopefully sooner rather later," he said.

The mall's owners declined to comment on the status of the plans.

Harman said he hopes all three projects — the mall, Metro Centre and Foundry Row — will benefit residents.

"Our community organization believes that all three can be viable hubs of commercial activity," he said. "It'll help the area grow. It's just unfortunate that there has been some discord between the [developers]."