Developers present working plan for new Towson apartments

Towson's next new apartment complex is slated to have a clubhouse space, bike racks and a rooftop deck.

Federal Realty Investment Trust is developing the downtown Towson property bounded by West Joppa Road, Washington Avenue and York Road. The L-shaped building envelops the SunTrust Bank branch at the same block.

The developer and site planners held a public input meeting Tuesday evening at East Towson Carver Community Center as part of a county development process that mandates developers have a working development plan submitted for approval within a year of the meeting date. Only five area residents attended the meeting. Those in attendance saw presentations on the site's architecture, layout and landscaping.

The complex, formerly referred to as 627 York Road, will have a street address on either West Joppa Road or Washington Avenue, where its parking entrances will be. Brian Donley, of Federal Realty Investment Trust, said rents would be on par with the Promenade running between $1,300 for a one bedroom and up to $1,900 for some two-bedroom apartments.

The building will have five floors of apartments, 35 of which there will be two-bedroom units, with 15 studio apartments and 50 one-bedroom units. The building will have two floors of parking for 103 total vehicles. Cars assigned to park on the top floor will enter from Washington Avenue, while cars assigned to the bottom floor will enter on West Joppa Road. Donley said additional parking, if needed, could be leased from the nearby Tolbert Parking Garage at 108 Ware Ave., owned by the Baltimore County Revenue Authority.

The roof deck currently planned for the project will include a gazebo, water feature, seating and elevator access. Donley said officials will express to the building's management company a desire for a curfew on the roof space.

Street level features, including landscaping, bike racks and benches, will conform with the details of the rest of Towson's core, said project planner Hank Alinger, of Bohler Engineering. In addition to a lobby entrance at Washington Avenue and West Joppa Road, the building will have a pedestrian entrance on York Road.

Sandy Kolar, a Penthouse resident, said she was excited for the fresh development in Towson.

"It's just exciting to see the neighborhood grow," Kolar said. "I feel it's the jewel of Baltimore County."

Though she said she was concerned about parking shortages in the complex's garage, she said she felt "at ease" that the developers are thinking ahead on parking issues.

Federal Realty owns a handful of residential properties nationwide, but the firm sees itself as a long-term owner and isn't likely to sell any of its properties, Donley said. The company's Maryland properties include Perring Plaza and The Avenue at White Marsh.

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