Developer breaks ground on flat-style apartments in Laurel

Developers from Klingbeil Capital Management broke ground Thursday on a new mixed-use development that will bring 142 flat-style apartments into the city's designated arts district on C Street. 

The apartments, which are expected to undergo full construction next month and be completed by September 2014, will be built at 350 Municipal Square; the former site of City Hall and the Laurel Police department.

 "The vision for this property is to bring life and activity to Main Street," said Jim Callard, president of Klingbeil Capital Management.  "We feel by taking this property and being able to populate here, it will help the shops on Main Street and generally begin to build the area."

The development, known as C Street Flats, will be a mix of one bedroom and two bedroom units ranging from 480 square feet to 795 square feet scattered between seven, three- and four-story buildings.

Klingbeil will offer two types of one bedroom units, a junior one bedroom at 480 square feet and a 550-square foot one bedroom, which will make approximately 59 percent of the development.  Rates for the units have not yet been set, according to Callard. 

The development will also have 2,500 square feet of retail, although Callard said tenants have not yet been finalized.

"We are open to anything, we want it to be very community oriented," he said. "We have not really pushed on that yet."

Callard said the developer wants to make the retail space available to its neighbors in the city's arts district, which the new apartments are in the center of.

"We'd like to get uses in there that would square with the arts and entertainment people," he said. "We want to work closely with the arts people. ... We are looking forward to [being a part of the arts district]."

Karl Brendle, director of the city's Community Planning and Business Services department, said the city will hold a sculpture competition with the winning piece to be displayed in the district's new parklet, a small park to be built by the city using funds from the developer.

"This will be the catalyst for other things to happen here," Brendle said. 

At the event, Klingbeil also announced the purchase of the Emerson apartment complex on Cherry Lane. The 446-unit apartment complex was aquired by Klingbeil last week for $93 million, according to Callard. 

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