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BDC denies tax break for proposed EBDI apartments

The Baltimore Development Corp.’s board denied a request by developers seeking support for a tax break to build apartments in East Baltimore.

Pennrose Properties and AVG Partners were seeking the BDC’s support for a 25-year Payment in Lieu of Taxes to build mixed-use buildings with apartments, retail and parking in the East Baltimore Development Inc. development area. The proposed apartments, which would be part of a five-story and four-story structures, would include market rate and affordable units.

The Project Review and Oversight Committee, which reviewed the proposal, recommended denying the request and the board complied. Deborah Hunt Devan, chairwoman of the committee, said the developer failed to demonstrate a need for the tax break. Another contributing factor is that EBDI is already a Tax Increment Financing district. The project would’ve been the first project reviewed by BDC to benefit from both of those tax breaks.

Tax Increment Financing allows for the city to borrow against anticipated increases in property tax revenues from a project to stimulate economic development in the area. While Payment in Lieu of Taxes allows for the developer and the city to negotiate a payment for a set time period instead of having to pay full property taxes right off the bat.

Philadelphia-based Pennrose Properties has developed several projects in Baltimore including Cherry Hill Senior Manor and The Riviera in Reservoir Hill.

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