A Houston-based luxury apartment builder is slated to be the first developer of Stadium Square, a mega-scale project in the historic black enclave of Sharp-Leadenhall west of Federal Hill.
Hanover Co. of Houston, TX., unveiled before a city design panel today preliminary sketches of a 293-unit apartment complex with an interior courtyard, clubhouse, swimming pool, retail space and a 450-car parking garage.
The building will be the first of a proposed $250 million complex across three square blocks of land bounded by Leadenhall, Cross, Race and Ostend streets east of M&T Bank Stadium.
The proposed six-story brick building will front Leadenhall Street opposite Solo Gibbs Park and a former firehouse.
The land had been assembled by Towson-based Caves Valley Partners, which disclosed it is selling off a parcel to Hanover to kick off the ambitious project.
Gentrification Around the Corner?
Sharp-Leadenahll is home to one of the oldest black enclaves in Baltimore. After decades of encroachment by roadways and industrial properties, the neighborhood has been reduced to several hundred residents scattered among a dozen blocks.
Caves Valley said the new development is aimed at young couples and entrepreneurs and will eventually feature office space designed for start-ups and high-tech companies as well as upscale restaurants and specialty stores.
At several community meetings, residents have expressed worry that they will be priced out of their homes as rent and property taxes increase as a result of the project.
Last September, Caves Valley partner Arsh Mirmiran reassured South Baltimore Partnership, a local citizens group: “We want to serve as a catalyst for the entire neighborhood. We donʼt want to plop down on three blocks and overlook everything else.”
Among those investing with Caves Valley in the project are the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation; David D. Smith of the Sinclair Broadcast Group; and 4th Down Partners, a real estate vehicle of Baltimore Ravens left tackle Eugene Monroe and Keith Payne Jr.
Last week, Caves Valley submitted (with developer Scott Plank) the only proposal for another property it prizes – the Cross Street Market east of Stadium Square, which it wants to lease from the city and modernize in keeping with Federal Hill’s growing affluence.