Seven years after winning a rezoning battle for higher density development in North Laurel, a developer has abandoned plans to build 194 apartments in favor of selling 160 town house lots, due to the difficult economic climate.
The James F. Knott Development Corp. submitted plans this month for the last phase of Bowling Brook Farms, off Gorman Road, which is expected to have 1,140 town houses and apartmentscompleted by the end of 1993.
"In the financing environment today, apartments are more difficult to develop," said Kevin Geraghty, senior development manager for the Towson-based firm. "The property is successful as a town house development and we found that the demand for additional town houses suggested that this kind of change was viable."
Bowling Brook Farms nowhas 366 apartments, which are owned and managed by Knott, and has sold 504 town house lots to several builders. Knott is building roads, sewer and drainage lines for an additional 114 lots, which were to have been the last of Bowling Brook Farms' town houses.
The 194 apartments, which Knott also planned to own and manage, were to have beenbuilt south of the Hammond Branch of the Little Patuxent River and along the south side of Knightsbridge Road.
"If they're leaving spaces in between things and leaving pieces of the woods, that's great,"said Ellen Waff, a board member of the Savage Community Association."As it is, Bowling Brook wasn't badly done. It's decent looking."
Geraghty said the remaining lots will be developed similarly. "Thereare remaining open space areas that are dedicated that will remain natural," he said.
Waff and fellow board member (now County Councilmember) Shane Pendergrass fought in 1985 against the zoning change that allowed Knott to develop apartments and town houses.