Kevin Plank wrote a letter to Baltimore on Wednesday.
In an open letter published as an ad in the Baltimore Sun, the Under Armour founder made a personal appeal to the city to approve the $5 TIF his development firm, Sagamore Ventures, is seeking for the Port Covington project. Saying he hasn’t been publicly speaking about the project more because of his day job running Under Armour, Plank compared Port Covington to historic moments like the founding of Morgan State and Johns Hopkins, as well as the arrival of Bethlehem Steel at Sparrows Point and the redevelopment of the Inner Harbor. He also points out that “today there is no Fortune 500 company that calls Baltimore home….yet.”
Along with arguing that Port Covington will result in jobs and private investment, Plank said they made a $100 million commitment in the form of a community benefits agreement. The entrepreneur’s characteristic sense of urgency was also on display.
“We can’t wait. I mean this both in the sense that we are incredibly excited to build something special in Baltimore City, and in the sense that we literally can’t wait to do so. Under Armour is out of space.”
Sagamore Ventures scheduled a press conference with politicians and community leaders Thursday to discuss further details of the community benefits agreement. Previous reports indicated that the Plank-backed firm agreed to include 20 percent of the living space in Port Covington affordable housing, but several advocates objected to the deal.
The firm struck a previous community investment deal worth $39 million with the six South Baltimore neighborhoods surrounding Port Covington.
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