Brokerage firm Alex. Brown signs lease to virtually take over Furness House

COMMERCIAL REALTY NOTES

April 15, 1992|By Edward Gunts | Edward Gunts,Staff Writer

Two years after it acquired the historic Furness House near Baltimore's Inner Harbor, the Cordish Co. has found a tenant. Alex. Brown & Sons Inc. signed a 10-year lease for virtually the entire building Friday and plans to move its asset management office there by Sept. 1.

Designed by Edward H. Glidden, the two-story,20,000-square-foot building at 19-21 South St. was completed in 1917 for Furness-Withy, a steamship owner and operator based in London.

A replica of the Furness headquarters in London, the building still has much of its original detail and other distinctive features, including 15- to 16-foot ceilings.

Cordish bought the building from Ramsey, Scarlett & Co. in 1990 and recently began extensive renovation and modernization work to prepare it for its new occupant.

Architects Peter Powell and Peter Fillat are working with the developer. Columbia Design Collective's interiors group, headed by Susan Boyle, is working with Alex. Brown. T. Courtney Jenkins III of Casey and Associates represented the tenant.

Baltimore Museum of Art

Tiltec Corp. is negotiating with The Baltimore Museum of Art to serve as general contractor for a $7 million museum expansion that will house 20th century art.

Museum director Arnold Lehman said Tiltec is the low bidder after Struever Bros. Eccles and Rouse's withdrawal of an even lower bid in March, and that representatives of the museum and the state are reviewing the bid documents in preparation for a contract award.

Assuming negotiations are concluded in time, Mr. Lehman said, he hopes construction will begin within a month.

Downtown Partnership

Retail sales in downtown Baltimore have a tremendous potential for expansion, according to a demographic study published recently by the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore.

Baltimore's planning department researched and compiled the statistics used in the report, which analyzes the office, residential and tourist populations downtown. It then projects the potential retail sales generated by those populations.

"This data will help Downtown Partnership, as well as brokers and property owners, attract retailers to downtown," said Laurie Schwartz, the president of the partnership.

"The study, when looked at in combination with the new ballpark and the many upcoming developments, points at a great opportunity for retailers to capitalize on the office, residential and tourist markets," she said.

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