Harbor East developer splits into two companies

The developer of the Harbor East neighborhood on Baltimore's waterfront has split into two companies, one that will focus on building at the adjacent Harbor Point and a second company that will manage Harbor East properties.

Michael S. Beatty, who founded H&S Properties Development in 1995 with John Paterakis, the owner of H&S Bakery Inc., to develop Harbor East, will lead the newly formed Harbor Point Development Group LLC, announced Harbor East Cos./H&S Properties Development Corp.

"My passion has always been on the real estate development side," Beatty said Wednesday. "I've spent 20 years creating one neighborhood, and I see value in creating more. I love this town, and there are other things I wanted to focus on in the city."

The Harbor Point company will continue to develop Harbor Point, including starting construction this spring on a regional headquarters for Exelon Corp, the Chicago-based energy giant which acquired Constellation Energy last year. The 27-acre Harbor Point, between Harbor East and Fells Point, is home to Morgan Stanley and slated to get a total of 3 million square feet of development.

Plans for the glassy, 22-story Exelon skyscraper, part of the $250 million first phase of the area's development, are to be presented Thursday morning to the city's Urban Design and Architecture Review Panel.

Beatty will serve as president of the seven-person company, made up of development executives from the Harbor East company, and work from an office at Harbor Point.

Spinning off the development side of the business will allow Harbor East Management Group, created five years ago, to better focus on leasing, managing and renovating a project that now includes about 5.5 million square feet of offices, apartments, shops, hotels and restaurants. That company will be headed by Tim O'Donald, who had been a vice president and director of property management for Harbor East.

"Harbor East was envisioned as a third of the size of what Harbor East has become," Beatty said. "It's become more and more of an operational project that needs more focus."

Beatty said splitting the company doesn't mean a split from a partnership with the Paterakis family. Paterakis and Beatty will keep an ownership stake in the Exelon tower. Paterakis, who could not be reached Wednesday, likely will continue to invest in Beatty-developed projects, Beatty said.

Paterakis and his family "will always be partners and friends, and John is like a father," Beatty said. "I've always been running the development, and he's invested, and that role will continue."

The new development company also plans to pursue projects elsewhere in Baltimore with other investors. Besides the Exelon building, the company plans to redevelop a parking lot north of Penn Station and is considering the best uses for the site, Beatty said.

Future projects would likely branch out into other parts of the city.

"Clearly we're going to stay urban and focused on larger, mixed-use projects," he said.


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