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Balancing Eastport’s Maritime and Residential Traditions

Several affiliated property owners approached Hyatt & Weber after assembling a contiguous group of parcels located along Spa Creek in the Eastport area of Annapolis. The parcels were developed with aging marina facilities, old housing structures, and no stormwater management or environmental controls on the site.

The owners sought to redevelop the properties in a coordinated site-wide approach that would revitalize the maritime uses and marina services, replace the existing homes on a unit-for-unit basis, and provide for nonresidential opportunities on the property in the future. The properties were split-zoned, subject to Eastport’s rigorous maritime and residential zoning regulations, and located within the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area, all of which meant complex regulations would have to be navigated if the project was to be accomplished.

Hyatt & Weber, widely recognized for its robust land use and zoning practice, assisted the clients in initiating their mixed-use redevelopment efforts by substantiating the existence of legally nonconforming uses across the site to facilitate the redevelopment of the residential uses. Working closely with the City of Annapolis Department of Planning and Zoning and other administrative agencies, Hyatt & Weber attorneys aided the owners in obtaining approvals for demolition of the marina facilities, dwellings and associated infrastructure; in achieving rezonings to unify the properties’ regulatory requirements; and in securing site design plan review approval for the South Annapolis Yacht Centre project.

The firm also defended against multiple challenges from nearby opponents who objected to the redevelopment project at administrative levels and later in court. After prevailing in each of the challenges against the project — including the City of Annapolis Port Wardens’ establishment of harbor lines, riparian rights and various other claims — the South Annapolis Yacht Centre moved into the permitting and construction phases.

With site work underway, Hyatt & Weber created a condominium regime for the multifamily residences, established covenants and restrictions for the single-family homes, and prepared the necessary contracts and associated materials to facilitate settlements at the project. The firm continues to represent the clients by handling various zoning and permitting matters that arise as the project comes to fruition. Residential closings at South Annapolis Yacht Centre are now underway while maritime and other non-residential uses are being leased and established.