300-unit, $48 million apartment project planned in Greencastle and Antrim Township

Staff Reports/Echo Pilot

A York-based firm plans to develop a 300-unit apartment complex with a swimming pool, clubhouse and walking trails in Antrim Township and the Borough of Greencastle.

Buchanan Flats is proposed by Inch & Co. Development Group on 30 acres north of Route 16 and west of Interstate 81 at Exit 5. Moss Spring Avenue would be extended to connect the complex to Route 16.

This image shows the proposed Buchanan Flats apartment complex with swimming pool, a clubhouse and walking trails in the Borough of Greencastle and Antrim Township.

The land is zoned general residential in the Borough of Greencastle and community commercial in Antrim Township. Both zoning districts allow developments of this kind.

Inch & Co. intends to submit plans to the two municipalities for the $48 million project by the end of the year and break ground in late fall of 2022, with completion in 24 months.

About the project

Buchanan Flats would consist of 10 30-unit, three-story, mainly one-and two-bedroom, garden-style apartment buildings, according to a news release from Inch & Co. Rent would average $1,200 to $1,600 per month.

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“The nature of housing has changed. Our residents, in many respects, could easily afford their own home but chose not to," Jeff Inch, CEO of Inch & Co., said in the news release. "Maybe they’re retired, or looking for maintenance-free living, but they’re predominantly single individuals or couples and accordingly we’ve found that the impact on schools — traditionally one of the first concerns we hear — has been shockingly low compared to public perception.”

“We provide amenities and a sense of space sufficient to give our residents a state-of-the-art onsite living environment, however with pedestrian connectivity and our location on the periphery of downtown Greencastle, this is a tremendous investment in local small business as well," according to Joe Eisenhauer, director of acquisitions for Inch & Co. “We’ve built developments like this in communities throughout the region and pride ourselves on blending into the local area and being good neighbors.”

Inch & Co. recently completed a 172-unit multi-family community in Marietta, Lancaster County, and is involved in a 120-unit project in Hampden Township, Cumberland County. Additionally, the company is planning 170 units in Mount Wolf, York County, and has close to 1,500 units moving through plan approvals throughout the region.

Locally, Inch & Co. is engaged in a partnership to redevelop the former Fort Ritchie Army base in Washington County, Maryland, that closed in 1998.

This aerial image shows the treed area where Buchanan Flats, a 300-unit apartment complex, is proposed on Parcel 01-0A17.-075.-000000 in Antrim Township and on Parcel 08-2B22.-077.-000000 in the Borough of Greencastle.

Job growth adds to housing demand

The project would address the need for housing in Franklin County, according to Eisenhauer, who sees an alignment of public and private interests.

“We’ve been following the tremendous economic expansion of Franklin County and the I-81 corridor over the last few years and see a situation where growth and opportunity will only be limited by the ability of those who want to live here to find a place to call home,” he said.

Housing is a concern shared by local leaders, including Mike Ross, president of Franklin County Area Development Corp.

According to FCADC statistics, there is 5 to 7 million square feet of distribution space planned in Antrim Township alone in the next few years and an anticipated need to fill as many as 6,000 jobs regionally.

The list includes the Walmart e-fulfillment center, a NorthPoint Development project at Exit 3 of Interstate 81 in Antrim Township that's expected to create about 2,000 jobs.

“National employers have identified Franklin County as a regional hub," Ross said. "We desperately need labor to fill the jobs and housing to keep up with growth.”

Franklin County was the 10th fastest growing county in Pennsylvania according to 2020 US Census data, growing by 4.2% and adding more than 6,300 new residents over the last 10 years for a population of 155,932, according to Ross.