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BALTIMORE-The former home of the Port Discovery HiFlyer helium balloon ride attraction is slated to become a multifamily development now that the City of Baltimore has chosen a team led by the Cordish Co. to bring new life to the site. Cordish will be given the rights to the half-acre property atop a Metro station and the airspace above it to create a 250-unit condominium and apartment property.

The development team–which includes general contractors Clark Construction Group LLC and Banks Contracting Co.–has given the project an estimated price tag of $70 million. It will be located at 701 E. Baltimore St., across from the Port Discovery Children’s Museum and the Power Plant entertainment and retail venue off Interstate 395.

Cordish’s plan for the site includes 125 rental apartments, 125 condominiums, a 50,000-sf retail complex with entertainment space, and parking accommodations for 400 vehicles. The proposal also calls for the partial redevelopment of the aforementioned Power Plant complex, which Cordish also masterminded.

“This project will create a new gateway into the city,” says Cordish chairman David Cordish. “Working with our architect, Michael Graves & Associates, we’re going to bring a truly world-class retail and residential project to Downtown that will continue the revitalization of the central business district.” The demand for rental units remains high in the city. The vacancy rate for class A apartments, according to a third quarter report by Delta Associates, is 2.6%.

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