"It's really about the community and bringing a nice craft beer establishment to an area that could be redeveloped," he said.

Banners proclaiming the arrival of Independent Brewing have been placed in the windows and hung from one of the four garage doors of the former auto repair shop, which Rhudy said is owned by the McComas family of Harford County.

Half of the garage would be converted into the brewery and a kitchen, and the other half would be a tap room and public gathering area.

The former showroom would serve as a formal dining area.


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Rhudy said the plan is for visitors to either buy the beer for on-site consumption or take it to go in growlers. They would also sell the beer in kegs through a distributor.

He plans to eventually put the beer in "smaller packaging" such as cans. If the company does incorporate canning, it would be through a mobile canning company that would bring all of the necessary equipment to the brewery.

"We have no intentions, in that location, of putting in a bottling or processing facility," Rhudy said.

He said mobile canning is "an ideal solution for a small brewery because they come with everything they need."

The new company has also been announced via the "Independent Brewing Company" page on Facebook, and the company truck, a 1951 Ford F1 pickup, was in Bel Air's Independence Day parade Friday.

"Our Facebook page blew up in the next two days [after the parade], with people finding out about us," Rhudy said.

The site is within a cluster of commercial buildings at the intersection of North Main and Ellendale streets, and the building slated for the brewery is between the Splish Splash car wash and The Mill of Bel Air supply center.

It is also a few blocks from the trail head of the southern portion of the Ma & Pa Heritage Trail at Ellendale and Williams Street.

That section covers nearly two miles between Williams Street and Heavenly Waters Park along North Tollgate Road, according to The Ma & Pa Heritage Trail website.

Rhudy said he hopes the presence of the brewery and restaurant would help spur the connection of the southern section of the trail and the northern portion in Forest Hill, which covers 1.7 miles between Friends Park and Blake's Venture Park, according to the trail website.

"We'd like to have our project be very centric to the trail and bring in runners and cyclists and dog walkers," he said.