Stadium Crossing Development to Bring New Office and Retail Spaces to Ostend Street

| February 18, 2019 | 0 Comments

Sam Himmelrich has been involved in real estate in South Baltimore since the 1970s when his family owned Inland Leidy at 900 S. Eutaw St. and now he is renovating his portfolio of properties near M&T Bank Stadium. Himmelrich’s company, Himmelrich Associates, manages four large buildings near the intersection of Ostend St. and Sharp St. which have recently been rebranded as Stadium Crossing.

The buildings include the Parker Metal Building at 333 W. Ostend St. which was recently renovated and is adding new office tenants; Spring Garden Business Park at 175 W. Ostend St., a flex building which is about to undergo a large expansion and renovation and which recently added Checkerspot Brewing Company; 190 West Ostend St. which was renovated into an office building in 1987 and is undergoing additional renovations; and 211 Stockholm St. which is a 1.3-acre waterfront site with a one-story warehouse. Each building has its own surface parking lots.

The properties are at the intersection of several different neighborhoods. They are partially in Spring Garden Industrial Area, Sharp-Leadenhall, Stadium Area, and Carroll-Camden Industrial area, and are near a lot of new investments. Stadium Crossing is just a few blocks from Federal Hill, which has seen continued investment for multiple decades. It is also one block west of the $300-million-plus Stadium Square mix-used development by Caves Valley Partners (CVP); a block from M&T Bank Stadium, which is undergoing a $120 million renovation; a block from an under-construction, 48,000 sq. ft. Hammerjacks music club; and a block from what Baltimore City is calling the Southern Gateway Entertainment District as Horseshoe Casino Baltimore ownership group CBAC has bought up nearly all of Warner St. for an entertainment-focused development. CVP is one of the partners of CBAC.

“For years, the Ostend St. corridor has been a great place for commercial activity,” said Himmelrich. “It has great proximity to Downtown, great proximity to the highways, and great proximity to the Federal Hill neighborhood. It has always been attractive to office and other commercial users due to its strategic geographic location. In the period we have been involved it has also been very safe with almost no crime.”

“Originally there were more manufacturing companies like Furst Bros, Baltimore Tool, and Durapak, but they’ve been displaced. The area has become more expensive, but it remains a great strategic location for commercial and residential activity since we discovered it 30 years ago,” added Himmelrich. “CVP has come in with a lot of enthusiasm and capital, as has the casino. It’s a great corner of the city.”

The Parker Metal Building 

Himmelrich Associates is putting the finishing touches on its renovation of the 50,000 sq. ft. Parker Metal Building. The company purchased the building in 1996 and went through Maryland Department of the Environment’s Voluntary Environment Cleanup in 1997. The property dates back to 1900 and is made of six different buildings that were combined together over the years. There are one-story, two-story, and three-story sections of the building.

Before renovations began

The Parker Metal Building today 

Renovations began in 2015 and leasing has been steady, according to Himmelrich. The building’s exterior brick was restored on the eastern and southern facade and the rest of the facades were repainted. The top floor has a painted “Parker Metal Building” sign in black and white adjacent to a rooftop deck. All of the windows look out to Downtown, M&T Bank Stadium, I-395, and the train tracks.

The building’s interior was restored with elements including exposed brick, polished concrete floors, and restored columns and beams.

Office tenants at The Parker Metal Building include Lighting Environment which occupies the entire second floor. Lighting Environment, which does lighting sales for 80 companies, made the move from 175 W. Ostend St. into a space that is twice as big. Lighting Environment’s space includes views of Downtown and M&T Bank Stadium, exposed ceiling beams, a gym, a game room, and more than 500 plants. Lighting Environment has 50 employees.

Choptank Transportation occupies one of three office spaces on the first floor of The Parker Metal Building. The space includes restored columns, tall ceilings, and a full wall of windows facing north.

Another one of first-floor office spaces has been leased to a tenant, but not yet announced.

Two office spaces remain available: a space on the first floor and a space that encompasses the entire third floor. Himmelrich said they have several prospects for the spaces.

The Parker Metal Building also has a wedding and event venue called The Winslow Room, which opened late last year. The venue can host events for 200 to 400 people. The Winslow Room has a rustic look with brick walls, concrete floors, restored beams, rolling doors, and a reclaimed marble bar. The venue is highlighted by a two-story main gathering area with a mezzanine level, pitched wood ceilings, steel staircases, string lighting, and many windows and skylights.

The space also has a full kitchen for catering and a smaller room ideal for wedding ceremonies or smaller gatherings.

The Winslow Room has already begun hosting corporate events and weddings. Himmelrich said it is “doing great.”

Photos courtesy of Himmelrich Associates 

Himmelrich Associates has its own events team led by Director of Events Janin Hardin. The company also runs event venue Mount Washington Mill Dye House and has an event space at its 1.3 million sq. ft. building Montgomery Park.

The Parker Metal building also has a large one-story space on the first floor and southern section of the property. Himmelrich Associates Leasing Director Ashley Tarran-Jones said they are negotiating with an entertainment/restaurant concept for the space.

“We are thrilled with our tenants and our event venue. We are confident we will lease the lion share of the space in a timely way,” said Himmelrich.

The Parker Metal Building is surrounded on two sides on the ground level by train tracks. There is a temporary fence separating the parking lots and building from the train tracks, but a permanent fence will be constructed in the near future.

It was a long journey for Himmelrich Associates to get the project to this point. “We got distracted by Montgomery Park in 2001,” said Himmelrich. “We really didn’t do it until we felt comfortable with the market and could finance it for it to make sense.”

Montgomery Park is adjacent to Pigtown and is currently more than 60% leased with office tenants.

“We are candidly thrilled at the design and the construction that has occurred there (The Parking Metal Building). It is exciting and getting better reviews than we ever thought,” he added.

Spring Garden Business Park

Work is beginning on a transformation of the 60,000 sq. ft. Spring Garden Business Park that will add 45,000 sq. ft. of office space. Himmelrich Associates purchased the 2.5-acre site from Maryland Cup. It constructed the U-shaped flex office building in 1988 for Grainger and several other tenants including a printing company as well as the AFSCME union offices, which eventually relocated to 190 W. Ostend St. Grainger eventually moved to its own building a few blocks southwest at 2100 Haines St.

Several tenants are still occupying Spring Garden including Maryland State Arts Council and Checkerspot Brewing Company, which opened last summer in a space fronting Sharp St. A first phase of Checkerspot is already open. Currently a two-story addition is under construction as Checkerspot moves forward with the second phase of the facility. The addition will add space to the first-floor taproom and allow Checkerspot to open its second-floor taproom and kitchen.

The new structure has been completed and interior finishes are now underway. Checkerspot hopes to open its newly-added space in mid-March.

Currently the west side of Spring Garden along Sharp St. has 21 ft. ceiling clearance and the east side has a 17 ft. ceiling clearance. The ceiling will be lifted on the east side of Spring Garden to raise it to 25 ft. which will be divided into two floors. Portions of the west side of the building are already two stories.

Since Spring Garden is U-shaped, it has facades that face train tracks; Leadenhall St. and the building’s eastern parking lot; the interior of the U that fronts a parking lot off Ostend St.; and the long facade along Sharp St. The facades facing the parking lots off Leadenhall St. and Ostend St. will get refaced with large new glass doors, openings, and windows. The Sharp St. facade will have large new windows and metal accents.

Himmelrich Associates is hoping to lure retail for many of the renovated first floor spaces. Himmelrich said they would love to add another restaurant and that they have received interest from retail tenants looking to open gyms.

The second floor spaces at Spring Garden will be ideal for offices.

Spaces are available at Spring Garden for tenants looking for anywhere from 1,500 to 85,000 sq. ft.

Renderings courtesy of Himmelrich Associates 

190 W. Ostend St. 

190 W. Ostend St. is a 50,000 sq. ft., three-story, brick building that was formerly a manufacturing facility for Bullseye Bill’s before being converted to offices by Himmelrich Associates. The company has been refreshing the building in recent months by renovating the lobby, the entrance, and a private patio. The first floor is fully leased but there is some space available on the third floor. Himmelrich Associates is currently converting the entire second floor into shared office space (co-working) for small companies and individuals in need of private office space.

190 W. Ostend St. features original wood beams and columns, exposed brick, and skylights.

Rendering courtesy of Himmelrich Associates 

211 Stockholm St.

At this time, Himmelirch Associates does not have any plans it is ready to reveal for 211 Stockholm St. as it chooses to focus first on its other projects. These projects include the other buildings in Stadium Crossing, Montgomery Park, and a mixed-use project in planning at a former Pepsi Plant in Hampden.

While not on Ostend St., 211 Stockholm St. is adjacent to Spring Garden and The Parker Metal Building. It is just east of BARCS, which will be torn down in the near future to make way for the driving range of a Topgolf facility. BARCS will relocate to Cherry Hill and Top Golf is expected to begin construction on the building section of the facility in adjacent Parking Lot J later this year. Topgolf is part of CBAC’s entertainment-focused development.

Himmelrich said 211 Stockholm St. is a “very cool property.” It features a parking lot, the one-story warehouse, and a lawn adjacent to the Middle Branch. The property is also adjacent to an MTA Light Rail bridge.

Himmelrich is confident all of the properties and new spaces in South Baltimore will continue to be successful. “We have always been focused on a good design. Our older projects still look good and we are able to offer spaces at fair rent,” said Himmelrich. “A key component of our South Baltimore success is that our spaces cost less than the Central Business District or suburbs. We’ve attracted a lot of architects and ad agencies that care about the design. Our expectation is that we will continue to find tenants that seek attractive, utilitarian space at a fair rent. We are well positioned to continue to do that in South Baltimore.”

Screenshot courtesy of Google Maps (click to enlarge). Properties under the control of Himmelrich Associates outlined in orange, properties under the control of CBAC outlined in blue, and CVP’s Stadium Square properties are outlined in white.

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