St. John Properties Unveils Master Plan for New Retail Component of The GATE Project in Aberdeen Proving Ground

BALTIMORE (March 30, 2010) – St. John Properties has unveiled the master plan for The Village Center at The GATE, the 60-acre complementary retail component to the firm’s Government and Technology Enterprise (The GATE) project located within Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG) in Harford County. Construction activities are expected to commence in second quarter on this multi-faceted project, which is planned to include approximately 78,000 square of retail space among up to nine different buildings. St. John Properties is constructing three single-story buildings containing 135,000 square feet of space at the 413-acre business community. This will add to the more than 210,000 square feet of office space either completed or under development by the company at The GATE.

The Village Center at The GATE will be comprised of two multi-tenant retail buildings, consisting of approximately 21,000 and 10,000 square feet of space respectively, with the 10,000 square foot building designed to accommodate a child care facility, two pad sites designed for full-service banks, and five restaurant pad sites ranging in size from approximately 2,900 to 7,500 square feet of space.

Each retail building will be positioned outside APG’s secure perimeter, near the Phase II section of The GATE, featuring unrestricted and direct access from Maryland Boulevard. The exterior design of the retail section will be reminiscent of a “Main Street” environment, with red brick construction, multi-color storefront awnings, pedestrian-friendly walkways and outside dining areas. Ample free parking surrounds The Village Center at The GATE at the ratio of five vehicles per 1000 square feet of space. Tenant sizes begin at 1,200 square feet of space.

St. John Properties has the capacity to build up to two million square feet of Class “A” multi-story and single-story space, as well as research and development (R&D) flex/office space at The GATE project. Upwards of 20,000 employees are expected to work at the business community upon final build-out.

St. John Properties anticipates attracting a range of business and necessity-based retail tenants to The Village Center at The GATE, including fast-casual restaurants, financial institutions, a fitness center, dry cleaners, business-related services such as a mailbox/copy store and other general interest merchants. The retail center is expected to address the day-to-day needs of employees within The GATE, Aberdeen Proving Ground, and residents who reside in Harford County region.

Among major projects under construction at Aberdeen Proving Ground is a two-phase, 2.5 million square foot campus to house the Command, Control, Computer, Communication, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) Command operations that is expected to be delivered in third quarter 2011. At that time, approximately 5,000 workers will relocate from existing facilities at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. The relocation of C4ISR to Harford County is generally recognized as the primary driver that will stimulate BRAC-related commercial real estate activities over the next 20 years. Located inside the main entrance to APG, The GATE is the closest office and technology park to the new C4ISR facility.

“We are pro-actively moving forward with the retail component to The GATE in anticipation of the many employees who will need lunchtime choices and business services in the mixed-use community,” stated Jerry Wit, Senior Vice President-Marketing for St. John Properties, Inc. “This project presents excellent opportunities for local and national retailers with forward thinking and vision that are familiar with the strong and prolonged addition of new businesses that is projected for The GATE and the surrounding region. Interest among retailers in The Village at The GATE is already strong, and we intend to be selective in our choice of tenants to provide the most effective mix of uses.”

About The GATE
The Government and Technology Enterprise (The GATE) is a 413-acre, state-of-the-art office and technology business park located immediately inside Aberdeen Proving Ground. St. John Properties is developing the park for lease to government sector and non-government users over an anticipated 20-year build-out.

About St. John Properties
St. John Properties, Inc., founded in 1971 as MIE Properties, owns and has developed more than 14 million square feet of R&D/flex, office, warehouse and retail space in Maryland, Colorado, Louisiana, Virginia and Wisconsin. For more information about the company, visit