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Old January 31st, 2014, 03:00 AM   #27881
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I agree with that. I think the most important thing is that what gets built be integrated with the rest of South Baltimore to the extent possible. I'm not sure how integrated it could possibly be with a highway and train tracks separating it, but it would feel like a missed opportunity if we built a cookie cutter development oriented to just get people on and off of 95 as quickly as possible.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 03:57 AM   #27882
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Something I'm really starting to notice is Baltimore has this problem of thinking too big. Projects like Superblock, State Center, Westport, Upton, the arena/convention project just go nowhere. Also the common denominator in all of these projects is the gov't was too involved. Yet the things that are organic and market driven are absolutely soaring in this city.

At Port Covington, we don't need another Downtown! Downtown has plenty of vacancies, westside is still a mess, there is plenty of space to expand in Harbor East, as well as at EBDI.

Not sure what is going on at Port Covington, but I know for a fact that our elected officials have no idea either. That is a great thing! They will probably come in and do what the market dictates, not some pie in the sky city hall driven project. The market probably dictates a low rise mixed used area, possibly a bit of mid rise, maybe one high rise. And gosh I hope they take advantage of the waterfront, which is the first thing the Sam's and Walmart eliminated.
Interesting because I feel like Baltimore always thinks too small. The arena situation is embarrassing and so small time. We don't think we can support or lure an NBA or NHL team. It's sad. Of course we can. UA is trying hard to become a real player in Bball. We should be teaming with them to build a world class arena that features mixed use. You don't think people would want to live on top of a new arena steps from the harbor with beautiful views of the water/great access to the stadium complex and all the area neighborhoods?

As for Port Covington, I just don't want to see a repeat of Canton Crossing. There is no reason to create a suburban environment on prime real estate on the water. Mixed use is definitely the best option, and there is nothing wrong with starting slow and only building a couple of taller structures and slowly adding on from there as demand warrants.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 04:06 AM   #27883
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The key is definitely a redevelopment of that portion of Hanover St. so bikers and pedestrians feel safe on that stretch. That will be a good start to integrating the two areas. I've already reached out to many to let them know that should be a priority with Casino Impact Funds.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 04:08 AM   #27884
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I don't agree entirely with the statement that the problem is too much government in some of these instances. State Center, for example, belongs to the government. There's no way around government involvement in that one. What killed State Center was lawsuits from downtown business associations who were opposed to market competition.

That's the same story with the Superblock. It's a little more complicated in that instance, granted, but downtown business owners killed it with litigation.
I don't think the problem is necessarily too much government, but I do think those are both examples of bad governance. State Center, as planned, would have been a giant waste of taxpayer money. And the wisdom of the Superblock was called into question by the mayor's own report. These were are just a couple of recent examples in a long line of government-backed mega-projects promising taxpayers future returns that never seem to materialize as planned. Such projects are generally driven more by politics than sound economic analysis, and Baltimore can't afford to waste so much political and economic capital on poor investments.

I'm encouraged by the fact that the city seems to be finally moving on from its love affair with ill-conceived government-backed mega-projects. There is a big role for government in development, but it's not to force through development projects that don't make sense to anyone else. The role of government should be to provide a fertile environment for development, in terms of good infrastructure, safe neighborhoods, a well-educated workforce, streamlined bureaucracy, sensible regulation, competitive costs, and a level playing field that is fair to all. It's not the sort of stuff that grabs headlines, and it's not all politically easy to do. But it would benefit the entire city, and it would enable the sort of sustainable long-term growth most of us would love to see.

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Old January 31st, 2014, 04:20 AM   #27885
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Interesting because I feel like Baltimore always thinks too small. The arena situation is embarrassing and so small time. We don't think we can support or lure an NBA or NHL team. It's sad. Of course we can. UA is trying hard to become a real player in Bball. We should be teaming with them to build a world class arena that features mixed use. You don't think people would want to live on top of a new arena steps from the harbor with beautiful views of the water/great access to the stadium complex and all the area neighborhoods?

As for Port Covington, I just don't want to see a repeat of Canton Crossing. There is no reason to create a suburban environment on prime real estate on the water. Mixed use is definitely the best option, and there is nothing wrong with starting slow and only building a couple of taller structures and slowly adding on from there as demand warrants.
I definitely don't want to see the city build an arena that is too small for NHL/NBA, but at the same time I don't think it needs to be a $billion project. I'd love for that project to happen, but I think the thought of it lost us several years, and construction would take significantly longer than just building an arena… which would take two years.

I agree I don't want to see PC look suburban, but I also don't want to hear about the tallest building in Baltimore, a velodrome, and Eiffel Tower type structure going in.

First priority needs to be reclaiming the Waterfront. If you can wisely integrate those great views it will never feel suburban. But curious to see what we hear next. Such exciting news for South Baltimore!
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Old January 31st, 2014, 04:48 AM   #27886
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Arena needs to happen ASAP and it should happen either right by the Harbor as currently proposed or on the current spot.

Tons of waterfront development area still available with Westport and Port Covington. Imagine if Westport and Port Covington were both built out with the renderings we've seen for both areas. Instead, we have nothing.
If this was Northern Virginia, you would be seeing these developments happening and this place would be off the charts.

Believe it or not, rightly or wrongly, people judge a place by design of its skyline and the amount of change that can be seen.

Will Baltimore look like it does now, unchanged over the next 30 years with tiny half-arsed developments?
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Old January 31st, 2014, 08:37 PM   #27887
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I don't agree entirely with the statement that the problem is too much government in some of these instances. State Center, for example, belongs to the government. There's no way around government involvement in that one. What killed State Center was lawsuits from downtown business associations who were opposed to market competition.

That's the same story with the Superblock. It's a little more complicated in that instance, granted, but downtown business owners killed it with litigation.

For many of the now deceased major projects, the common theme isn't the government. It's Peter Angelos.

To be clear though, I agree with your general point that the government should step aside as much as possible, but I also think there's a common sentiment among many in Baltimore's business community in opposition to thinking big. Many in Baltimore would rather remain a big fish in a small (and shrinking) pond than to try to grow the pond. They still hold onto the mistaken assumption that what helps my neighbor hurts me. That's not how healthy cities behave and it'll be the end of Baltimore if that's the way our business leaders think.


So.. State Center is "kilt"....and I not talking about what some Irish wear.....
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Old January 31st, 2014, 08:40 PM   #27888
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I really like that idea a lot.
Wow...somehow if that was in Baltimore.. people would be living in them there woods....
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Old January 31st, 2014, 08:54 PM   #27889
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Coldspring on Coldspring

Hurray... finally I can be proud of my street....

This should be a boost for Coldspring Lane and North Baltimore.. Cross Keys in making improvements.. the Rotunda is well underway as well...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/mar...0,973343.story
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Old January 31st, 2014, 10:09 PM   #27890
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So.. State Center is "kilt"....and I not talking about what some Irish wear.....
My guess is that State Center will be revived when Howard Street is gentrified, otherwise, there's just no reason to do it since there's plenty of development space closer to downtown there and it continues to be fallow in the worst way. "Transit Oriented" is a nice phrase, but then Howard is transit oriented too. Unfortunately, "when Howard Street is gentrified" is a way of saying it's going to take a while. The buildings in State Center are drab, but they're not on the critical list and can go on with minor repairs for quite a while.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 10:11 PM   #27891
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Hurray... finally I can be proud of my street....

This should be a boost for Coldspring Lane and North Baltimore.. Cross Keys in making improvements.. the Rotunda is well underway as well...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/mar...0,973343.story
Interesting. I'll be watching to see what happens there. It really is a strange building site, being sort of down in a hole, but it does have potential. I hope they do something to link it clearly to Cold Spring and Falls Road so it's not so isolated.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 10:38 PM   #27892
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I am incensed about Baltimore's latest contribution to the pop culture scene, that being the movie released today; "12 O'Clock Boys". This glorification of lawlessness and contempt for motorists, pedestrains and the cops is now destined to be played out in other urban centers. There is absolutely no good to come from this film. It is unfortunate that a film maker from MICA chose this story about Baltimore life to present to the world. Unfortuantely the New York Times gives it a decent review, but not thinking of the negativity this film will bring. If the movie ended with this kid, Pug, getting out of this gang and into a more self-enriching life, then this film would be worthwhile. But his life doesn't change, the story ends where it began with Pug wanting to be accepted by this dirt bike culture. The film maker provided a lot of detail about this story on NPR last Sunday, that is how I know about this flick.

I wish Baltimore can export more positive images. If there are such talented film makers at MICA, why not showcase the city in a better light? Here is another story to toss in the bin with "Homicide" and "The Wire". What's next, corrupt correction officers sleeping with prisioners?
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Old January 31st, 2014, 11:03 PM   #27893
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I am incensed about Baltimore's latest contribution to the pop culture scene, that being the movie released today; "12 O'Clock Boys". This glorification of lawlessness and contempt for motorists, pedestrains and the cops is now destined to be played out in other urban centers. There is absolutely no good to come from this film. It is unfortunate that a film maker from MICA chose this story about Baltimore life to present to the world. Unfortuantely the New York Times gives it a decent review, but not thinking of the negativity this film will bring. If the movie ended with this kid, Pug, getting out of this gang and into a more self-enriching life, then this film would be worthwhile. But his life doesn't change, the story ends where it began with Pug wanting to be accepted by this dirt bike culture. The film maker provided a lot of detail about this story on NPR last Sunday, that is how I know about this flick.

I wish Baltimore can export more positive images. If there are such talented film makers at MICA, why not showcase the city in a better light? Here is another story to toss in the bin with "Homicide" and "The Wire". What's next, corrupt correction officers sleeping with prisioners?
You know "He's Just Not That Into You" made Baltimore out in a positive light
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Old February 1st, 2014, 12:55 AM   #27894
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Interesting. I'll be watching to see what happens there. It really is a strange building site, being sort of down in a hole, but it does have potential. I hope they do something to link it clearly to Cold Spring and Falls Road so it's not so isolated.
agreed. 400 market-rate apartments in such an isolated area seems rather cramped. Since Loyola's Athletic complex will be within a stone's throw of this development, Loyola students will probably snatch up most of the vacancy in this building on the day it opens...
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Old February 1st, 2014, 03:16 PM   #27895
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That's a pretty huge development. It's not any more isolated than Mill #1. I think the appeal will definitely be a complex with its own stores and light rail access.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 03:28 AM   #27896
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according to this link below (on page 4), this TOD Cold Spring housing development was originally supposed to be 150 apartments & 4 stories tall....

http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/Office_...imore_City.pdf

well, now, it's ballooned to a whoopin' 400 apartments. If you consider the fact that this property is only 5 acres, the residential building should end up being about 7-8 stories....
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 03:47 AM   #27897
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Got these snaps of Hyatt Place (Central Ave and Fleet St) today from the passenger seat of my car on a drive by. It's not much, but for crying out loud, we need to get more photos up in this forum.







Looks like this thing is going really fast now that the concrete and steel are rising above ground.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 03:55 AM   #27898
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Also, I noticed today driving down Pratt Street past the R2integrated building, that the steel is finally going up. Won't be long and that project will be photo worthy too.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 11:45 PM   #27899
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More photos from a drive-by today, Riverside Wharf on Key Highway and Lawrence. (I''ve said this before, but I always hate to say, "drive-by" in Baltimore.)







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Old February 3rd, 2014, 12:31 AM   #27900
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