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Maryland group to convert former warehouse into apartments

A Maryland based real estate investment group hopes to offer 171 new apartments to Baltimore residents by the spring of 2014, when it expects to complete renovations on a warehouse formerly used by department store chain Hochschild, Kohn and Co.

According to the group's recent announcement, the former warehouse property will house 25 two-bedroom apartments and 146 studio units, each with 13 foot ceilings. The apartments, expected to range in size from 470 to 950 square feet, will be market-rate rentals. The group also plans on improving the former warehouse's courtyard with a garden.

The group says it has already found architects to design the building's renovation and contracted builders to handle the extensive construction required. The group's own property management affiliate will handle unit leasing. It plans on including parking on the premises but expects that many residents will not use this feature as "the neighborhood offers abundant public transportation and car-sharing services."

The property's developers hope to lease the first floor of the remodeled warehouse to a number of businesses, though they are yet uncertain on what that might entail. "The developers are seeking a merchandising mix that could include a market or drug store as well as a café or restaurant," explained a statement issued by the group.

According to the group, the 225,000 square foot building was constructed in 1941 and initially housed Hochschild, Kohn and Co.'s fur storage vault and a furniture warehouse, "as well as warehouse space for merchandise offered at Hochschild Kohn's nearby Howard Street department store." Hochschild, Kohn and Co. ceased operations in 1983. Since then, the building has housed branches for Insurance company Aegon and the Bank of Baltimore.

Source: Baltimore Sun, "Former Hochschild Kohn warehouse showroom to be converted to apartments," Steve Kilar, Dec. 4, 2012

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