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Second apartment complex planned at Route 543/Route 1 intersection in Hickory

Peak Management is proposing to build a five-building, 184-unit apartment complex on the northeast corner of Routes 1 and 543 in Hickory.
Peak Management is proposing to build a five-building, 184-unit apartment complex on the northeast corner of Routes 1 and 543 in Hickory. (Courtesy Frederick Ward Associates)

A second apartment complex is being planned in Hickory at the intersection of Route 543 and Route 1.

The same company — Peak Management — that built the Avanti apartment complex on Tollgate Road is proposing another apartment community — 184 units in five buildings that will have amenities including a clubhouse and pool, according to Kate Connelly, a landscape architect with Frederick Ward Associates Inc., the engineering firm for the site.

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A community input meeting on the Crossroads at Hickory project is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday at the Bel Air Library, 100 E. Pennsylvania Ave.

The project would be on the triangular shaped property bordered by the Hickory Bypass, Business Route 1 and North Fountain Green Road.

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More than 50 residents attended a Harford County Development Advisory Committee meeting this week to voice their displeasure with planned developments on Route 543.

These will not be subsidized apartments, Connelly said, they will go for market rate.

The rates for Crossroads at Hickory have not been established yet, but rent at Avanti on Tollgate Road ranges from $1,486 to $2,100, said Teresa Rosier, vice president of Peak Management.

The apartments will be one, two or three-bedroom with dens, large enough for people who are downsizing to accommodate their furniture, she said. Kitchens will have granite countertops and stainless steel appliances — a very updated look, she said.

Despite an influx of apartments in Harford County in recent years, Rosier said there is still a demand.

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“For the longest time there was no new product in that area,” she said. “It’s a nice variety to offer those who want to reside in Harford County but want a maintenance-free lifestyle where they don’t have to worry about [property] taxes, maintenance and those kinds of things.”

Avanti has not been less than 95 percent occupied since construction began in 2015. Market studies of similar apartment complexes in the area are equally occupied, Rosier said.

“I think it will do extremely well there. It’s a good school district, a nice rural area,” said Rosier, who lived in Vineyard Oak neighborhood for eight years before moving to a new home on Tollgate Road. “I think it’s screaming up there for it.”

The property was initially zoned for commercial use, which would bring a much higher traffic count than apartments, she said.

Two other apartment complexes are planned in the area, both low-income.

Homes for America is proposing to build a 72-unit apartment complex, Homes at Fountain Green, with three apartment buildings and a community building having an active recreation area and a dog park, on the southwest corner of the intersection.

The property is about 10 acres and is zoned B3, where apartments are a permitted use. It was rezoned from commercial industrial during the 2008 Harford Comprehensive Zoning Review.

Dozens of people attended a Development Advisory Committee meeting in January, concerned about the impact the complex would have on traffic and their quality of life.

“We all moved to Harford County to have a certain quality of life and apartment complexes are not part of that quality of life for me and for a lot of my neighbors,” Rick Mattox, who serves on the homeowners board of the Vineyard Oak development near the proposed apartments, said at the time. “That wasn’t part of the quality of life. We all work really hard, did lot of good things in our lives, moved out to a community of big single-family homes, that’s the kind of life we want to have, open green spaces. Not living next to apartments.”

The Homes at Fountain Green is similar to the 56-unit Bensons Corner project in Fallston, at the intersection of Belair Road, Harford Road and the Bel Air Bypass.

Harford County Executive Barry Glassman opposed both projects.

Havre de Grace's deputy planning director says city sewer will not be provided for proposed mixed-use development on Route 40 outside city limits, and a proposed Fallston apartment complex draws public concern about traffic, school overcrowding and potential crime if subsidized housing is providey

“Harford County does not support this project,” Glassman wrote in a letter to the director of multi-family housing for the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development.

The county is asked to weigh in on the project when tax credits are being considered.

“The location of the proposed 72-unit mixed-income multi-family rental is not harmonious with the quality of life residents of Harford County have come to expect.”

In his letter, Glassman said the site lacks public transportation for low-moderate income households, with the nearest stops two and three miles away, and it’s in an area that lacks sewer capacity.

“The ... project is not consistent with our community development goals and, therefore, we urge the State not to award tax credits,” he said.

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