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The Daily Record: Mr. Bozzuto Goes to Washington

June 04, 2013

A developer who has built several high-profile apartment projects in the Baltimore area testified about the vitality of that market before a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee in Washington on Tuesday.

Tom Bozzuto, chairman and CEO of The Bozzuto Group in Greenbelt, told members of Congress that the housing rentals are a $1.1 trillion industry that have 35 million residents today.

Bozzuto’s testimony was part of a presentation by the National Multi Housing Council and the National Apartment Association.

“In an environmentally sound way, we help build vibrant communities by offering housing choice, supporting local small businesses, creating millions of jobs and contributing to the fabric of communities across the country,” Bozzuto said.

Bozzuto’s company has built dozens of apartment developments in Maryland. It opened The Fitzgerald apartments on Mount Royal Avenue in midtown in 2010, The Arbors at Baltimore Crossroads near Middle River and is a partner in a new community in west Baltimore, The Uplands.

As part of his presentation Tuesday, Bozzuto profiled another of his company’s developments now underway in Fells Point, the $72 million Union Wharf.

“This building required enough concrete to fill 240 swimming pools,” Bozzuto said of the project located at Thames and Ann Streets expected to open later this year with retail on the ground level. “End-to-end, the lumber used would span about 331 miles and the drywall could cover more than 42 football fields.

“In addition, we will use 204,000 lbs. of granite, 290,000 bricks, more than 7,000 gallons of paint, 1,700 appliances and 3,500 cabinets. A significant percentage of these construction materials were manufactured in America, with more than 25 percent being sourced within 500 miles of the project site.”

Bozzuto also said the U.S. needs about 300,000 new apartment units annually to meet rental demands. Less than half of that was built in 2012, he said.

“The apartment industry can be a robust economic engine that provides lasting job growth and spending nationwide,” Bozzuto added. “With up to seven million new renter households forming this decade—almost half of all new households—the dollars and jobs we add to the economy will only grow in magnitude.”