Warfield Cos. has purchased a 91-acre mixed-use development in Sykesville and plans to build 600,000 square feet of office, retail and light industrial space.
Plans for the project, called Warfield at Historic Sykesville, also include roughly 180 residential units, a full-service hotel and a 27-acre park. Roger Conley of the Warfield Cos. touted the project, originally contracted in 2014, as a spur to the “economic vitality” of the town and region.
“The Town of Sykesville and Carroll County worked closely with us to re-energize this project and to provide compelling real estate offerings to benefit businesses, retailers and local residents, as well as visitors to the area … we are in discussions with prospective buyers and tenants to create attractive uses at this strategically located site,” Conley said.
Located on Route 32, the site already includes 12 buildings that date back to the early 20th century. The buildings were previously used by Springfield Hospital Center in the early 2000s, according to Warfield Cos., and have historical designations from the National Park Service and Maryland Historical Trust.
Three of the buildings have been overhauled and are being used by Nexion Health, Zeteo Tech and The Carroll County Dance Center. Warfield plans to restore the other nine buildings for lease or purchase.
The first phase of construction, set to begin this month, involves building 145 townhouses. Virginia-based Elm Street Development acquired that portion of the project and is building the homes in partnership with a national builder.
The first new commercial space is set to be delivered early next year. Warfield is in talks with multiple hotel and retail operators about taking space in those portions of the projects that are slated to be built in the next round of construction.
Dennis Boyle, of Lee and Associates, has been hired to handle leasing and marketing for the commercial, retail and hospitality portions of the project.
“We also believe that there is some untapped demand from companies with ties to Fort (George G.) Meade that will likely take an interest in Warfield now that the project is officially open for business. In general, companies and retailers are turning their attention to secondary markets to establish new locations,” Boyle said.
Warfield plans for a mix of residential, office, and retail development comes at a time when similar projects in other suburban submarkets represent a sizable chunk of the office development pipeline in the Baltimore metro area.
“The appeal of a live-work-play environment continues to trigger construction in Columbia, White Marsh, and Towson. Projects in these three submarkets account for more than 20 percent of the Baltimore market’s current development pipeline, with additional projects expected to break ground in the next 12-24 months,” according to a report from CBRE on the Baltimore metro area office market performance in the second quarter of this year.