PSA to my Knox Box friends…

Knox Box renters might lose their housing this fall.

Todd Dumaresq, marketing manager of Toll Brothers, reached out to me in late April with updated plans for Terrapin Row, a mixed-use housing complex that eventually will replace College Park’s historic Knox Boxes.

I asked him about the development plan, and he said they will begin demolishing Knox Boxes after the property sale goes through in August. A few Knox Boxes will remain, but most will be razed.

Wait, what? I know quite a few people who are renting for the next year. Knox has been advertising in The DBK that they were leasing for the 2014-15 academic year. I was shocked, to say the least, so I skipped class to talk to Dumaresq and the Knox Box management company.

Gosia Sylla, Knox Box property manager, did not respond to my interview requests. I called her and emailed her several times, and she sent me this statement in response:

“Knox Management LLC is actively renting for 2014-2015 academic year. We still have a few apartments available, so anyone who would like to experience a Knox Box living should call us immediately at 301-776-0162! If Toll Brothers close on the deal, they are required to honor signed leases.”

But Dumaresq said Toll Brothers will go through with their plans to demolish Knox Boxes “almost immediately” after the sale goes through.

“If the sale goes through in August, and we expect it to, the leases in question will be terminated,” he said. “There is a 90-day termination clause in each lease and that termination clause will be exercised.”

People don’t read the fine print — and I’m sometimes guilty of that myself — and they could lose out this fall if they don’t know to look for other housing options until it’s too late.

Here is a copy of the development plan: Existing Conditions – Demolition Plan _ DSP

Terrapin Row site plan, courtesy of Miriam Bader/City of College Park:

Terrapin Row site plan

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