Baltimore’s Inner Harbor is an incredible asset for Baltimore City and the State of Maryland, fueling $2.3 Billion in overall economic activity, creating 21,000 jobs in the region and generating $102 Million in annual tax revenue to the City and State.
In the 1960’s and 70’s few Baltimoreans believed that our Harbor, for years a sore sight of abandoned piers and vacant warehouses, could ever attract tourists; but by 1980 our Harbor was in fact attracting people from around the world to visit what had been cited by professionals as a model of urban redevelopment. As more people took notice, tourism continued to grow around our crown jewel and in 2012 alone over 14 million people from out of town visited the Harbor.
Baltimore’s original Inner Harbor Master Plan created an “urban playground for Baltimoreans” by installing a brick promenade, attracting historic ships and cruise vessels and creating attractions such as Maryland Science Center, National Aquarium, Harborplace and the Power Plant.
It is hard to believe that this year, 2013, the Inner Harbor promenade is 40 years old. Just like any aging attraction, especially one with over 14 million visitors per year, the Harbor needs attention in the form of infrastructure improvements, new amenities and attractions to keep visitors coming back and to serve our local residents.
In February 2013 Waterfront Partnership, Greater Baltimore Committee and the City agreed it was time to build on the strength of the original Inner Harbor Master Plan by adding new features to keep the Harbor as magical and active as ever. We hired Ayers Saint Gross architects to work with us to consider ways to enhance the public spaces at the Harbor – to add more green space, more free family friendly public amenities like Walter Sondheim Fountain and Pierce’s Park; to agree on a Plan for Rash Field, and establish design standards to ensure the high quality standard the Harbor deserves is maintained.
We hope you will take some time to review the Plan. Posted on this page for viewing or download are several documents: The Inner Harbor 2.0 Plan; A Summary of the Plan; and highlights of an Economic Impact Study performed by HR &A Advisors, a real estate, economic development and public policy consulting firm.
While Waterfront Partnership helped to facilitate this important initiative along with Baltimore City and the Greater Baltimore Committee, the Harbor belongs to Baltimore and we want to hear from you – please take some time to review the Plan and enter your comments on this page by December 31, 2013. Your feedback is especially important since the plan has not been adopted yet and will need to meet Critical Area and other approvals. After the first of the year, the Baltimore City Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on the Plan with the goal of adopting the Inner Harbor 2.0 Master Plan. We welcome your comments and participation.