Brewery on tap for mixed-use project

Burkentine Builders is erecting two mixed-use buildings in New Freedom as part of its Franklin Square development.

Burkentine Builders is gearing up to finish a mixed-use project that will bring another brewery to southern York County.

  • The Hanover-based builder held a topping-off ceremony April 25 for the roughly $5 million project, which is bringing two buildings totaling 10,000 square feet of commercial space and 20 apartments to the borough of New Freedom.
  • Construction is expected to wrap up this fall, but one commercial tenant is already lined up. Vortex Brewing, a startup brewery, will occupy the first floor of one of the buildings.
  • The 5,000 square-foot space will be the first for Vortex, said brewery co-owner Richard Foard.
  • “We looked at a lot of locations,” he said. “We just fell in love with New Freedom.”


Where is this happening: The buildings are going up on the site of a former American Insulator factory at 1 E. Franklin St. in New Freedom, near the Heritage Rail Trail County Park.

  • Burkentine already built 62 townhomes and 72 apartments for the overall development, dubbed Franklin Square.
  • “Our goal is to create meaningful spaces for people to live and this is the definition of that,” Burkentine co-owner Mike Burkentine said, noting that members of the Burkentine family had worked at the American Insulator plant.
  • York-based Warehaus is the architect on the project (shown in a rendering).

What’s brewing: Vortex is the third brewery in recent months to locate or expand in southern York County.

The trend: New rental apartments have seen heavy demand in Central Pennsylvania and around the U.S.

  • That is expected to continue as rising interest rates make it even more expensive to buy a home.

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