A new apartment building is expected to deliver its first units this winter at 4700 Berwyn House Rd., where a five-alarm fire in April destroyed most of Fuse 47 — the original building on the site — before it could open to the public.
Wood Partners, which also developed Fuse 47, is now opening "Alloy by Alta," a 275-unit apartment building, at the previous site of Fuse 47, Wood Partners director Scott Zimmerly said.
Geared toward students and young professionals, Alloy by Alta will feature a pool area, clubroom, shared working space and expansive fitness center, a press release said.
"Of the existing apartment communities, we're pushing the envelope, and we should be the most modern and sophisticated apartment living offered in College Park," Zimmerly said.
The design for Alloy by Alta is the same as it was for Fuse 47, Zimmerly said. Because Fuse 47 never opened, he said, there was no need to change anything except the name.
In addition to the high standard of living at Alloy by Alta, Zimmerly said the apartment building is at "one of the best locations in town." The building's proximity to the University of Maryland, the College Park Metro Station and nearby retail will appeal to individuals of any age who want to live in College Park, he said.
College Park City-University Partnership Executive Director Eric Olson said the apartments will help create a more vibrant and unique midtown area — north of the campus — by putting people within walking distance of what it has to offer.
College Park's midtown has places such as Vigilante Coffee, The Board and Brew, the Discovery District and Clark Hall. In the future, Lidl, the Purple Line and the Iribe Center will open there as well, he said.
"These are customers that are going to support retail, and they're going to contribute to our local community," Olson said.
While traditional student housing — such as the University View and The Varsity — usually charges by the bed, Alloy by Alta will be a market-rate project that charges by the room, Zimmerly said. The developers have an agreement with the city to ensure this, College Park Mayor Patrick Wojahn said.
Wojahn said the city is "enthusiastic" about the possibility of more non-student housing coming to College Park. Most of the housing built in College Park in the past 15 years has been student-oriented, he said, and now the focus is shifting to include non-students.
"We have reached the point where the market is very near saturation [with student housing], and we need to focus on bringing some more diversity of housing options into College Park," Wojahn said.
Projects like Alloy by Alta will help bring in long-term residents who stay in the city and support local businesses all year, Wojahn said, whereas students at this university leaving during the summer and winter months prevents the economy from being stable year-round.
Both the city and this university have been supportive in getting the apartment building open, Zimmerly said, and Alloy by Alta hopes to start leasing this fall when graduate and undergraduate students come back to the campus.