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Kevin Johnson, design architect at Ayers Saint Gross, shows schematics Thursday for the proposed apartment project. (The Daily Record/Maximilian Franz)

Beatty Development unveils Harbor Point apartment plan

The Urban Design and Architecture Review Panel got its first look at an apartment building proposed for the $1 billion mixed-use Harbor Point project.

Beatty Development Group, and architect Ayers Saint Gross, are proposing an 18-story apartment building with 285 apartments and about 20,000 square feet of ground floor retail as part of the building currently being called Point Street Apartments. Thursday marked the first time the panel reviewed schematics for the project.

“I think the massing is off to a very good start,” panelist David Haresign said.

Marco Greenberg, vice president of development for Beatty Development Group, said after the hearing that the company would like to break ground on the project in the first quarter of next year and hopes to deliver the building by summer 2016. He also said there wasn’t a cost estimate for the building and that the project is still very early in the development process.

“This is just kind of filling in the blanks,” Greenberg said about the presentation.

Kevin Johnson, design architect for Ayers Saint Gross, said his firm has oriented the building to give residents the best views of the harbor. As proposed, the building has three tiers and narrows as it extends east.

Panelists had few comments, primarily because it is so early in the design process, but said they liked what was presented.

“I like the overall concept you’re going for,” panelist Judith Meany said.

Although the board praised what was presented, members declined a request to approve the schematics because of an aggressive timeline to deliver the building.

“I think this is undercooked at this point,” Haresign said.

The proposed apartment building is part of the larger proposed development for Harbor Point. According to Beatty Development Group’s website, the project calls for a total of 6 million square feet of mixed use space and 9.5 acres of open space. That also includes 1.6 million square feet of office space, 195,550 square feet of retail space and 910 residential units.

This spring construction started on the 20-story Exelon Corp. headquarters that is a major piece of the Harbor Point development. Construction on that portion of the site was controversial because of environmental concerns about puncturing a cap covering hexavalent chromium leakage at the site.

That building is also anticipated being delivered in the summer of 2016. Greenberg said that project is on pace to finish on schedule.