Work Begins on the Sagamore Spirit Distillery, Third Project Underway at Port Covington

| August 11, 2015 | 1 Comments

Work on the Sagamore Spirit distillery at 301 E. Cromwell St. in Port Covington has begun as crews have started clearing the site for infrastructure improvements. This is the first new-construction project in Sagamore Development’s redevelopment of Port Covington and Westport, which includes 230 acres of land acquisitions and a future 3 million sq. ft. campus for Under Armour.

Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank owns Sagamore Farm, a thoroughbred horse farm, which first opened in Glyndon in 1925 and features a natural spring that is filtered by limestone and used by the farm’s horses for water. Plank discovered this water would also be perfect for distilling rye whiskey.

Sagamore Development is hoping to combine the feel of Sagamore Farm and the industrial history of Port Covington, as well as the feel of the Chesapeake Bay, in its plans for the five-acre Sagamore Spirit distillery. When researching the history of 301 E. Cromwell St., Sagamore and the design team from Ayers Saint Gross discovered that the site was coincidentally once home to another distillery before becoming the home to a depot for the Western Maryland railroad. The site was originally home to Fort Covington, which was used to defend Baltimore during the War of 1812.

The plan for Sagamore Spirit distillery includes four buildings that are designed to feel like a part of a waterfront park. This includes a 27,000 sq. ft. distillery building, a 22,000 sq. ft. processing building, a 10,000 sq. ft. restaurant, and a 2,000 sq. ft. support building, all of which will surround a green courtyard space. There will also be a 120-foot water tower which will hold water from the Sagamore Farm spring.

The design will include many elements from Sagamore Farm including red roofs and gray brick, modeled after the horse stables.

The plan also includes a waterfront promenade that could potentially be part of a much larger promenade, additional green landscaping, storm water collection areas, and two additional piers, which Sagamore is hoping to build five acres of additional park space on top of in the future.

Sagamore Spirit will offer daily tours and a tasting. They are currently speaking with operators about the restaurant space, which will feature a 6,000 sq. ft. first floor with a dining area, kitchen, bar, and gallery, as well as a 4,000 sq. ft. second floor event space.

Sagamore is hoping to attract visitors by both water and land. They are hoping to lure the water taxi to the development and will eventually have spaces for boats to dock. The property will also have a parking lot for cars and they are hoping to eventually attract a bus stop to the site.

The construction timeline for the Sagamore Spirit distillery is approximately 14 months. Barrels of whiskey are already in production and they hope to launch the rye whiskey at next year’s Preakness.

The Sagamore Spirit distillery is the third Sagamore Development project currently under construction in Port Covington. The development team is also converting the former Sam’s Club at the shopping center into a new 170,000 sq. ft. office building for Under Armour’s finance and IT department. It is also renovating 101 W. Dickman in West Covington and naming it City Garage. This will be the home of Under Armour’s Innovation Team, which is responsible for designing shoes, and a temporary home to bottle Sagamore Spirit rye whiskey. City Garage will also be the home of trades like glass blowing, blacksmiths, flag makers, metal workers and 3-D printing. The 140,000 sq. ft. facility was described as a “collaborative space,” one which will be open for tours to local students and visitors.

Additional plans for Port Covington are expected to be revealed at a Urban Design & Architecture Review Panel (UDARP) meeting at the end of the summer.

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Creator of SouthBmore.com and resident of SoBo. Graduate of Towson University and owner of Incept Multimedia, a full service video production company. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, beach volleyball enthusiast, dog lover and "bar food" foodie. Email me at Kevin@InceptMM.com and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.
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  • Condi Smith

    Cherryhill, Morrel Park. Mount Winans, Lakeland, and Violetville are not South Baltimore?