- The Washington Times - Friday, March 21, 2008

Sailing, fishing and crabbing are among the recreational pursuits enjoyed by residents of Anne Arundel County, a county with more than 534 miles of coastline. Visitors and residents alike spend time exploring the shops, restaurants and historic sites of Annapolis, the state capital, as well as home to the U.S. Naval Academy.

The Anne Arundel Economic Development Corp. (www. aaedc.org) estimates that 518,000 people live in the county, which offers convenience to both Baltimore and Washington, along with its own array of recreational and cultural activities and entertainment.

In addition to water-related activities, residents can spend time outdoors on the 13-mile Baltimore & Annapolis Trail, which attracts walkers, bikers, runners and horseback riders. Nature can also be enjoyed in the county at two state parks, more than 70 county parks and at nature preserves.

The Anne Arundel County Web site (www.co.anne- arundel.md.us) says that the first European settlers arrived in the county in 1649 when the settlement known as Providence, on the north shore of the Severn River opposite present-day Annapolis, was founded by a group of nonconformist Virginia Puritans.

Anne Arundel County, created in 1650 by the Maryland General Assembly, was named after the wife of Cecil Calvert, who had been granted the Colony by King Charles I.

Initially dependent on tobacco, the economy of Anne Arundel County shifted during the 19th century as the area’s importance increased as a regional transportation link along the railroad between Baltimore and the rest of the state. Seafood and associated industries, along with crops such as corn, wheat, hay and fruit, also became more important than tobacco during the 19th century.

Anne Arundel County’s economy grew as the result of an increase in recreational visitors, beginning in the late 1880s with the opening of summer resorts such as Bay Ridge, “The Queen Resort of the Chesapeake,” the county’s Web site reports. Rail and steamboat access brought visitors from the Baltimore area to the northern part of the county.

The movement toward suburban living and industrialization added to growth in the county during the second half of the 20th century, when employers such as National Plastics Corp. (Nevamar) and Westinghouse moved into the county.

Military employers such as the Naval Academy and Fort George Meade also encouraged local growth, along with shopping malls and the opening of Thurgood Marshall Baltimore-Washington International Airport (formerly known as Friendship International Airport) in 1950.

According to the county’s economic development office, the 10 largest public sector employers in the county today include Fort George Meade, the Anne Arundel County Public Schools, BWI Airport, the state, county and city governments, the Naval Academy, the U.S. Coast Guard Yard and Tenant Command, Anne Arundel Community College and the U.S. Postal Service.

The 10 largest private sector employers in Anne Arundel include Northrop Grumman, Southwest Airlines, the Anne Arundel Health System, Computer Sciences Corp., Arinc (aircraft and avionics telecommunication systems), Booz Allen Hamilton, Allegis Group (IT and engineering placement), Verizon Communications and Lockheed Martin.

Recommendations of the Defense Department’s Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) committee are anticipated to consolidate more than 5,700 jobs at Fort Meade by 2011. County officials estimate an influx of 33,000 new jobs regionally as a result of BRAC.

The total county population, estimated at 518,932 in 2007, is anticipated to grow to 563,000 by 2030. The U.S. Census Bureau’s 2006 American Community Survey estimated the median household income in the county at $79,160.

Development of new homes for current residents and anticipated new residents clusters primarily in two areas of the county: Annapolis and in the area linked by Odenton, Fort Meade and BWI Airport.

Annapolis Towne Centre, a mixed-use development in Parole with condominiums built above the retail space, will have about 2.2 million square feet, with 700,000 square feet of retail space, 150,000 square feet of office space, a 100,000-square foot hotel and nearly 1 million square feet for residential use.

This $800 million project sits on a 32-acre site. The retail component is anticipated to open in October, and the first phase of residential development will begin occupancy in March 2009.

Sturbridge Homes is building 150 condominium homes at GrandView at Annapolis Towne Centre, where residents can enjoy a rooftop swimming pool, hot tub and lounge, a fitness center, a social club and concierge services in addition to the shops and restaurants of the development.

The homes have one to three bedrooms with one to three full baths, some with a half bath. Standard features include 10- and 11-foot ceilings, ceramic tile flooring in the foyer, kitchen and baths; granite counters in the kitchen and a master bath. Many of the homes have a covered balcony.

The homes have 840 to 3,654 finished square feet, with base prices from $475,000 to $2,000,000. Condominium association fees are $462 and up per month. Call 410/268-1798 or visit www.sturbridge homes.com.

JBJ/Carlyle Park Place LP is building condominiums at the Residences at Park Place in Annapolis, a seven-story building with an outdoor swimming pool, exercise facilities, a dog park, a library, a community entertainment lounge, a home theater room and concierge services.

This mixed-use development has reserved parking, shops and restaurants. The one- to three-bedroom homes have one or two baths, an electric fireplace, granite kitchen counters, high-tech wiring, ceramic tile flooring in the baths and a stacked washer and dryer.

Some of the homes have balconies or terraces, and some have a master bath with a tub and separate shower. The homes have about 800 to 2,000 finished square feet, with base prices from $429,900 to $2,000,000. Condominium association fees average $572 per month.

Call 410/216-9267 or visit www.parkplace-annapolis.com.

K. Hovnanian Homes is building 76 single family homes at Monticello, near the intersection of U.S. 50 and Interstate 97. These brick- or stone-front homes have 2,658 to 4,645 finished square feet, with four bedrooms, two or three full baths, a half bath and a two-car garage. Standard features include high ceilings, a gas fireplace, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring and a master bath.

The homes are base-priced from $649,990 to $799,990. Call 410/224-4440 or visit www.khov.com.

Winchester Homes Inc. is building 64 town homes with brick fronts and two-car garages at Admirals View. Priced from $468,000, these homes include hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, high-tech wiring and a kitchen with maple cabinets and granite counters.

Call 301/591-0713 or visit www.winchesterhomes.com.

At Broad Creek Landing, Winchester Homes is building 24 single-family homes on quarter-acre sites. These homes have 3,124 to 4,343 finished square feet, with oak stairs, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, a gas fireplace, high ceilings and a master bath.

The homes are base-priced from $671,000 to $837,000. Call 410/793-4459 or visit www. winchesterhomes.com.

At Homeport, both Winchester Homes and the company’s luxury homes division, Camberley Homes, are building single-family homes with water access or a waterfront site.

Winchester Homes is building 24 homes with brick or stone fronts, oak stairs, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, a gas fireplace, moldings and maple cabinets with granite counters in the kitchen. The homes have 3,532 to 5,902 square feet, with base prices from $950,000 to $1,265,000.

Camberley Homes is building five waterfront homes on 1-acre or larger sites, each with a brick or stone front, high ceilings, oak stairs, a gas fireplace, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, Energy Star certification and a kitchen with wood cabinets, granite counters and upgraded stainless steel appliances.

These homes have 5,984 to 6,935 finished square feet, with base prices from $2,093,000 to $2,520,000.

Call 410/793-4461 for Winchester, 410/715-6745 for Camberley or visit www.winchester homes.com.

Caruso Homes Inc. is building brick-front town homes at the Vineyards of Annapolis, priced from the upper $500,000s. Each three-story home has a three-level sunroom extension, a finished recreation room on the lower level, high ceilings, moldings and a kitchen with Corian counters, a center island and 42-inch cabinets.

Call 410/263-0505 or visit www.carusohomes.com.

Porten Homes is building single-family homes priced from $699,000 and up at Annapolis Ridge, each with a brick front, four bedrooms and 3½ baths. The homes have more than 3,500 finished square feet, with standard features such as granite counters in the center-island kitchen, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, high ceilings, a gas fireplace and a two-tiered, columned front porch.

Call 410/573-0445 or visit www.portenhomes.com.

Near Odenton, Winchester Homes is building 252 single-family homes at Chapel Grove. Two collections of homes are available, all with brick or stone fronts, a gas fireplace, high ceilings, hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, a luxury master bath and a gourmet kitchen.

Base prices for the homes range from $607,000 to $746,000.

Call 410/695-4415 or visit www.winchesterhomes.com.

Toll Bros. Inc. is building town homes and single-family homes at the Enclave at Arundel Preserve in Hanover, a planned community with a community center, a swimming pool, tennis courts, walking trails and playgrounds.

The town homes, base-priced from $444,975 to $474,975, have 2,119 to 2,203 finished square feet with three bedrooms, 2½ baths and a garage.

The brick-front single-family homes have four bedrooms and 2½ baths with a two-car garage. These homes are base-priced from $581,975 to $609,975.

Call 443-755-9400 or visit www.tollbrothers.com.

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