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Old February 5th, 2007, 06:58 AM   #561
baltimoreisbest
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Err...

On a more positive note, given the mayor's commitment to fix up midtown from Mount Royal to 25th streets, I'd like to know if you had any suggestions for what you'd like to see improved here, what businesses you'd like to see in place, and what general atmosphere you would hope evolves here.

I'll give mine... Aside from the streetscape improvements which are in order, I'd like:
1. The BDC's intentions for the Chesapeake Restaurent realized
2. Everyman theater to remain a live performance destination.
3. A good jazz club somewhere between Lafayette and North Ave.
4. A used bookstore -- think the Strand -- opposite the Charles... featuring food, perhaps with a mix of Fed Hill's 3 Kings
5. A comprehensive Asian food market on 20th and Charles, in that ugly vacant lot.
6. Creation of "Korea Town" themed streets and events between Maryland & North Ave and Charles & 23rd St. Encouragement of minority-owned small businesses all along this corridor to complement existing establishments. Zoning to permit sidewalk, cafe-style seating, outdoor art exhibits, etc.
7. Outdoor food vendors where people will browse for their wares.

Looking forward to your wish lists...
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Old February 5th, 2007, 07:14 AM   #562
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I found this interesting

Pa. to Md. hovercraft ferry seeks to get off the ground

Travelers between Philadelphia and Baltimore may soon have a new way of making their trip -- over water -- thanks to a hovercraft ferry service being developed by Mid-Atlantic Hovercraft Operations LLC.

John Anderson, a partner at MAHOPS and the entrepreneur who founded the Mount Holly, N.J.-based venture in 2004, envisions a service that would initially ferry passengers between Bensalem; Cinnaminson, N.J.; Penn's Landing; Aberdeen, Md.; and Baltimore's Inner Harbor using four Griffon 8000 hovercraft.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 07:17 AM   #563
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Rezoning on Howard St.

Traffic signal retiming. (Citywide issue here). Possible general change in traffic patterns, long hashed and recapitulated.

The City to follow through with the investment and restoration of Barclay.

Zoning to allow more mid-rise, mixed use apartment buildings on vacant lots, up to but, definitely not exceeding 180 ft.

The CAC Red Line or Yellow Line

Nate
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Old February 5th, 2007, 09:03 AM   #564
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If you look at that second beauitiful areial from flash. Notice how large the brown area is where Hopkins leveled for its biopark. Seeing it in relation to the regimented blocks of the turn of the century city really gives you a feel for large a project it is.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 11:41 AM   #565
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City invites BRAC growth
Officials prepare for the expected influx of jobs and residents
By Eric Siegel
Sun Reporter
Originally published February 5, 2007
Resurfacing key roads. Giving more money to a nonprofit that markets city housing. Creating a "BRAC Stat."




These are among the steps Baltimore officials say they are taking to ensure that the city captures its share of the growth expected to come to Maryland from the military base realignment and closure process, or BRAC.

"We will make sure we capitalize on the opportunity," said Andrew B. Frank, the city's deputy mayor for economic development, who is heading up a multiagency city effort on BRAC.

Aides say Mayor Sheila Dixon will highlight a key aspect of the effort during today's State of the City address: a decision to have Live Baltimore, the highly regarded group that promotes urban living, market the city to military and defense contract workers whose jobs are being moved from Northern Virginia and New Jersey to Fort Meade in Anne Arundel County and Aberdeen Proving Ground in Harford County.

The nonprofit, which already receives about a fifth of its annual operating budget from the city, has presented an ambitious proposal that would cost $450,000 in the first year and would include hiring additional staff; hosting bus tours of the city, perhaps including overnight stays, for key managers; creating an enhanced Web site; and distributing thousands of promotional kits and CD-ROMs.

As of the end of last week, officials were looking to identify sources of funding and deciding how much of the proposal the city could afford to fund. But Frank said: "We are definitely going to do it."

A recent study by the Maryland Department of Planning projects that Baltimore will get about 2,500 households from BRAC relocations through 2015, or about 10 percent of the new households expected to arrive in central and northern Maryland.

Some Baltimore officials say the city would like to gain a greater share, and state planners acknowledge that its projections are not set in stone.

"Different things can happen in different areas of the state to make the numbers fluctuate," said Richard Eberhart Hall, the state's acting secretary of planning.

Unlike some of the counties, where there are fears that increased growth could exacerbate existing problems with congestion and sprawl, city planners say that Baltimore welcomes and is prepared to accommodate an influx of new residents.

They point out that the recently adopted city master plan calls for the number of households in Baltimore to increase by 10,000 within the next six years, a number that far exceeds the number of households expected to come to the city from BRAC.

And they add that Baltimore is geographically positioned to take advantage of growth at both Fort Meade and Aberdeen, which together are expected to account for the vast bulk of households stemming from the new BRAC jobs.

Within the next two weeks, Frank says, he plans to convene a regular meeting of city agencies and outside groups to monitor progress in what he calls "BRAC Stat," a takeoff of the CitiStat government performance monitoring system.

In some key areas, the city is a part of regional efforts. For example, the city is working largely through the Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore to attract defense contractors and - through the Baltimore Metropolitan Council - to set priorities for major BRAC-related transportation projects.

On its own, the city is stepping up road improvements, like at the eastern end of Boston Street, and Broening and Pulaski highways, to help accommodate reverse commuters who will need access from the southeast to Interstate 95 and the Beltway.

Karen Sitnick, director of the Mayor's Office of Employment Development, says the city's policymaking Workforce Investment Board is going to discuss BRAC-related jobs and the city at its meeting next month.

Sitnick acknowledges that she does not know how many BRAC-related jobs will be available to city residents, particularly those who are unemployed or underemployed. But she says she feels there is some potential, particularly in "spinoff" service jobs throughout the region created by the influx of new residents.

"Baltimore City is not where most of the jobs are going to be," said Sitnick. "We have got to be prepared to take advantage of any possible opportunity. That is what we are going to do."

Officials say the greatest potential boost to the city will come from residents.

Some city advocates are vigilant in making sure the city is not left behind. At a hearing in Annapolis two weeks ago, Del. Maggie L. McIntosh, who represents Northeast Baltimore, questioned why the official Web site for Fort Meade included a link to several nearby counties, but not the city. The next day, the base added a link to the city, with a spokesman acknowledging McIntosh had a "good observation," saying the base would continue to add information.
Tracy Gosson, who put together Live Baltimore's BRAC proposal, said she was encouraged by a survey she took during a three-day fair for relocating at Fort Monmouth, N.J., in June.




"Seventy-five percent of the people had a positive perception or no perception of Baltimore City," said Gosson.

The New Jersey workers might be particularly receptive to a pitch for city living, both because of their proximity to Manhattan, which gives them an appreciation of urban living, and because the houses in Northeast - which are most convenient to the proving ground - are attractive and affordable, Gosson said.

Indeed, for all the talk of the highly paid, highly skilled workers who will be drawn by BRAC, state planners estimate that nearly half of the new households that are coming will have incomes of less than $75,000 a year - a level that makes the relative affordability of city housing particularly important.

In the south and southwest sections of Baltimore that is most convenient to Fort Meade, city planners note that there are already a number of new housing developments on tap, including Uplands, Poppleton, Wyndholme Village and Westport.

Frank said the city will expedite its review of a request by Westport developer Patrick Turner for a tax increment financing, or TIF, bond to help pay for site improvements for what Turner has described as an $800 million project with 2,000 units of new housing, as well as shops, offices and a hotel on abandoned industrial land along the middle branch of the Patapsco River.

"The Westport project becomes more important because of BRAC," said Frank, "and it will be treated as such."

Turner noted that his development is "central to Aberdeen and Fort Meade," and he said he hopes to have the first units available in 2009, the beginning of a seven-year period when state planners say demand for housing should be strongest.

Separately, city planners have begun planning for transit-oriented development around the West Baltimore MARC station on West Franklin Street and the area around the Middle Branch. They say the latter will provide a softer, greener complement to the Inner Harbor that will be attractive to new BRAC workers - and everyone else.

"There is a huge amount of community space there," said acting city Planning Director Douglas McCoach. "It is not just housing. It is livable communities."



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Old February 5th, 2007, 02:39 PM   #566
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Amazing aerials. I could sit and look at them for hours.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 03:35 PM   #567
MasonsInquiries
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenW View Post
City invites BRAC growth
Officials prepare for the expected influx of jobs and residents
By Eric Siegel
Sun Reporter
Originally published February 5, 2007
Resurfacing key roads. Giving more money to a nonprofit that markets city housing. Creating a "BRAC Stat."
based on this article, i really believe that we're going to eventually get a 65-story tower out of Turner's project, if not higher.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 03:43 PM   #568
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Yep. The one thing that sticks out in my mind is how many HUGE marina's there are in the NW branch of the harbor. Don't think they should allow more. It's getting hard to see water from some places due to the acres of boats.

The "Arts Tower", AKA Bromo Seltzer rehab appares to have started. There is scafolding hanging from the building now.

We will never get 100% occupancy of class A offices nor should we. Every city needs a couple of large contigious chunks of space on the market to accomodate growth and new corporate arrivals.

Legg bought Citi money management not to get a NY presence, but because it was a conflict of interest for a bank to be involved in that business. That is why almost all banks are now selling/closing their money management divisions. Being in the asset management business while also being a bank opens them up for large law suits when they cross sell products just to make commissions.

Water Street and the Vue are almost sold out. Rental units downtown are leasing very quickly. In fact, in the news today there was a blurb about how tight the rental market is. The commentator stated that rents are expected to rise by 5% this year. I expect that the Zenith, and all the other rentals, will do just fine. The Cresent in Fells Point just opened and it looks like about half the units are already occupied. It's a large building too.

FINALLY - Crane 2 of the Hilton is rising. Sorry for the quality - I was driving a car at the time I took it. It should be taller than the Zenith's when fully errected.



God it's cold. Get ready to pay OPEC.

Last edited by wada_guy; February 5th, 2007 at 03:55 PM.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 09:26 PM   #569
getontrac
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^Maybe once we build the Hilton and all the other new and converted hotels we can knock down that damn ugly Holiday and Days Inn.

My God, they are waste of space eyesores!

Forgive me, but what jackass designed that and what nimrod approved that Holiday Inn?--it mars the whole block!

Nate
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Old February 5th, 2007, 09:37 PM   #570
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I know that Lockwood Place originally was intended to be taller than it is, but the plans got scrapped for logistical reasons. And I think it's great how the space is filling up with quality retail right now, but... man is that space depressing to me when I drive by it and see how small it is, especially considering how it sits on the city's main drag.

Is there any way that somewhere along the line, the building could be built upon to add additional stories to it, perhaps for more prime office space, on top of the already established street retail? Or is that just an impossible dream?
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Old February 5th, 2007, 10:56 PM   #571
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I don't know about the office portion of the site, but you do remember the garage behind the retail portion once was figured for hotel and rental/condo on top of it.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 11:17 PM   #572
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Balmurfan View Post
Pa. to Md. hovercraft ferry seeks to get off the ground

Travelers between Philadelphia and Baltimore may soon have a new way of making their trip -- over water -- thanks to a hovercraft ferry service being developed by Mid-Atlantic Hovercraft Operations LLC.

John Anderson, a partner at MAHOPS and the entrepreneur who founded the Mount Holly, N.J.-based venture in 2004, envisions a service that would initially ferry passengers between Bensalem; Cinnaminson, N.J.; Penn's Landing; Aberdeen, Md.; and Baltimore's Inner Harbor using four Griffon 8000 hovercraft.
This should be pretty cool. I wonder how long the trip from Philly to Baltimore would take.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 11:27 PM   #573
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenW View Post
I don't know about the office portion of the site, but you do remember the garage behind the retail portion once was figured for hotel and rental/condo on top of it.
Pratt St. doesn't need any more office space for the time being. I could plausibly see a hotel there. I could also see apartments at the current site of the Baltimore City College building.

Also, here's a piece of news, somebody just leased the fifteenth floor of 750 E. Pratt. I don't know who, because CoStar doesn't list leasees, but I am suspecting that it's Constellation, which already has floor 14 and 16, 17, and 18. It's probably just for future expansion, which brings me to my big point... There's a reason that a company would need to reserve space in a building that's historically been empty. Basically, reason stands to tell that somebody's interested in taking space there, and Constellation needs to "fill out" it's block or risk having discontinuous floors in the facility.

Finally.... I have little knowledge of this area, but it seems to me that most public television networks have studios in the cities from which they broadcast. In MPT's case, however, everything's in Owings Mills. What's the possibility ot attracting a tenant like MPT, perhaps on the West Side, which would make attractions like the Hippodrome more accessible to their cameras. Just a thought, but I happen to think that MPT might be a great asset for the city...
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Old February 6th, 2007, 12:17 AM   #574
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Check this out. I e-mail JJ Clarke about One Light Street.
Here is my e-mail:

From: Steve Wyatt
To: [email protected]
Sent: Monday, February 05, 2007 4:20 PM
Subject: hello


Hello Mr. Clarke. Hope you are doing good.
I have a question for you, Sir.
When will updated news on "One Light Street" be released?
I thought there was something said last Oct. or Nov. that stated news on One Light Street would be released by the end of the 2006 year.
I and others are very anxious to hear some news on it. It is THEE best site in the Center City area. Hope something great is built there.

Thank you,

Steve Wyatt

----------------------

His responce:

"Want to buy it?"


--------------------

So, who want's to get some money up and buy that property?
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Old February 6th, 2007, 12:21 AM   #575
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A nice picture shot by pfd103 over at ssp.
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Old February 6th, 2007, 12:26 AM   #576
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Which "300" do you like better?


or...



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Old February 6th, 2007, 12:53 AM   #577
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It was said before how irregular the land parcel is for 300 East Pratt. No matter what goes there the structure will look very sleek and slender when looking from Federal Hill. However, if I could choose one it would be the older rendering; probably because it has a unique style not seen downtown.
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Old February 6th, 2007, 04:06 AM   #578
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DEFINITELY the older one. its shape affords more light play. more balconys. its set back design is less imposing from the street. i could go on and on.....
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Old February 6th, 2007, 04:07 AM   #579
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I hope he's just kidding around! That comment, and its the first one to represent this, doesn't sound promising.



Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenW View Post
Check this out. I e-mail JJ Clarke about One Light Street.




Here is my e-mail:

From: Steve Wyatt
To: [email protected]
Sent: Monday, February 05, 2007 4:20 PM
Subject: hello


Hello Mr. Clarke. Hope you are doing good.
I have a question for you, Sir.
When will updated news on "One Light Street" be released?
I thought there was something said last Oct. or Nov. that stated news on One Light Street would be released by the end of the 2006 year.
I and others are very anxious to hear some news on it. It is THEE best site in the Center City area. Hope something great is built there.

Thank you,

Steve Wyatt

----------------------

His responce:

"Want to buy it?"


--------------------

So, who want's to get some money up and buy that property?
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Old February 6th, 2007, 04:21 AM   #580
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That's what I was thinking.
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