Developers presented designs to the city Thursday for a more affordable apartment project in South Baltimore.
The developers said they want it to complement a large luxury building they are building on one side of Lawrence Street, helping to complete the corridor's transformation into a more pedestrian-friendly path to the waterfront.
Dubbed Anthem House II in homage to the new 292-unit building across the street, the roughly $10 million project would include about 52 apartments with rents aimed at workers just out of college, said Scott Plank of War Horse LLC, which is working with Bozzuto Group and Solstice Partners on the project.
Plank, brother of Under Armour founder Kevin Plank, declined to provide an estimate of the rents but said he wanted the area to be able to serve workers with a mix of incomes.
"When we build new product, we need to expand the affordability of that product," said Plank, who is involved in other projects in Locust Point, including renovations to a nearby diner, rowhouses and improvements at Francis Scott Key Elementary/Middle School. "It's affordability through great design."
The 1430 Lawrence St. building, presented Thursday to the city's Urban Design & Architecture Review Panel, would rise five stories on what is currently a parking lot. The design is crafted to look like three different buildings to ease its transition into the rowhome neighborhood.
The project would have an interior parking garage with about 20 spaces. Residents would also be able to park at the bigger Anthem House and use amenities there, the developers said.
Panelists said the design by San Francisco-based David Baker Architects introduced a welcome new look to Baltimore, with balconies and nonbrick building materials.
"I actually have no negative comments at all to make," said Gary Bowden, a member of the urban design panel who typically offers voluble feedback.
Zoning for the project was approved earlier this month, over the objections of the Planning Department, which had recommended a less intense designation it said better matched the neighborhood.
Jeffrey Kayce, vice president at Bozzuto Development Co., said developers hope to break ground on the roughly 40,000-square-foot building in 2016, with construction taking about 12 months.
The apartment building will need further approval to proceed.