The Packing House redevelopment project making progress, future economic driver for area

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CAMBRIDGE, Md.- Located in the heart of Cambridge, The Phillips Packing House was once a community hub and an economic driver.

Today, a current redevelopment project looks to make sure it will soon be that again. “It’s really the epitome of community development with what’s happening in Cambridge,” Warner Hanson’s Heidi Hanson said.

The 60,000 square foot warehouse will include a shared kitchen, restaurants, provide workforce training, and more.

Tuesday, community leaders and the project development team met to discuss the progress made and spoke about the importance of not only revitalizing the space but preserving history. “No wonder it’s been since 2016, because we had a lot to learn and absorb and lessons to understand,” Project Manager Margaret Norfleet-Neef said.

“If a group had come in to work on the packing house and had not considered the history of not only that building but the community around it, the packing house would not be what it is not and what I think it will be,” Eastern Shore Network for Change’s Kisha Petticolas said.

The building is the last remaining packing house from the Phillips Company, as it closed back in the 1960s. Now we’re told it will be a beacon of hope to revitalize downtown Cambridge.

“We are hopeful that the packing house and the spaced that it is creating will help to inject that entrepreneurial spirit back into the community,”Petticolas said.

After years of sitting vacant and a project that’s now six years in, those we spoke with say the goal is to keep the facility thriving and never empty again. “There’s a doorway on all sides of the building and that means that you can enter and leave at any juncture. That we hope makes it feel like it is always open for everyone,” Norfleet-Neef said.

The $35 million dollar project will also support agriculture, environmental technology, and tourism.

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