The Marsh & McLennan Building at 300 W. Pratt St., one of the few buildings left in downtown Baltimore with a cast-iron front, was the surprise grand award winner in the annual design awards contest sponsored by the Baltimore chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
Thirteen other buildings or projects were selected either for awards or honorable mentions, but the Marsh & McLennan Building was called "a unique project" that represents "the best of both the 19th and 20th centuries" in Baltimore architecture, said Philadelphia architect John Bower, one of the three judges for the awards program.
RTKL Associates Inc. of Baltimore was the architect for the five-story building, which involved the restoration of the 1871 cast-iron-fronted Wilkens Brush Co. building and the construction of a five-story glass and steel addition. Stone and Associates Inc. was the developer. Lawrence Construction Co. was the general contractor, and Steven T. Baird Architect & Associates was responsible for cast iron restoration. Edward Haladay was the RTKL principal in charge of the project.
The awards ceremony was held last week at the Fidelity and Guaranty Life Insurance Co. building in Mount Washington. In addition to the architectural projects, the chapter also presented Special Service awards to Albert Copp, former chairman of Center City-Inner Harbor Development Inc., the Baltimore AIA's Urban Design Committee, and the Baltimore Architectural Foundation's Kids-in-Design Program. Awards also went to five of the chapter's associate members: Ann Adams, Jing-Yao Chang, Michael Dowling, Mark Goeller and John Low, all of RTKL Associates.
Developer Leroy Merritt has purchased the 74-acre Eldersburg Business Center near the intersection of Routes 32 and 26 in Carroll County for $8.6 million and signed Londontown Corp. as a tenant for the first of seven buildings he plans to construct there.
Londontown leased 151,250 square feet of storage and distribution space in the first building, which is already under construction, and will have 340,000 square feet of warehouse space when it is complete in early 1991. Londontown, which designs and manufactures men's and women's outerwear, has its corporate headquarters adjacent to the Eldersburg Business Center. It plans to move its London Fog Knitwear Products division from the corporate location to the new business park.
The other six buildings will contain an additional 700,000 squarefeet of office and warehouse space.
Tom Martel and Walter Patton of Kayne Levin Neilson Bavar Realtors represented the seller, the Baltimore development firm Dorment and Carter. Mr. Merritt negotiated for his own company, and his company will handling leasing for the seven buildings.
Andrew J. A. Chriss vice president and director of brokerage operations for Manekin Corp., was chosen as Realtor of the Year, Commercial/Industrial, during a recent awards dinner sponsored by the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors.
Other winners included Coldwell Banker Commercial, for the industrial transaction of the year, the lease of a 139,000 square foot warehouse; and W. C. Pinkard & Co./Colliers International, for commercial transaction of the year; the sale of the B&O Building at 2 N. Charles St.
Also, Warfield's magazine and the Daily Record newspaper for commercial/industrial affiliate of the year; and David Bavar and Patrick A. M. Miller of Kayne Levin Neilson Bavar Realtors for most unusual commercial/industrial transaction, the assemblage of land for the One Light Street office tower at Baltimore and Light streets.
Around the region:
* Peebles Fashion Department store will open a branch at the recently renovated Carrolltowne Mall in Eldersburg tomorrow at 1 p.m.