Working closely with Baltimore City, especially the Department of Recreation and Parks and Baltimore Development Corporation, Waterfront Partnership is taking the lead in bringing to life a new waterfront park experience at the 7-1/2 acre Rash Field Park.
Park plans focus on serving Baltimoreans and visitors, especially children and youth, citywide by creating a safe, accessible, and centrally located park. This brand-new park will offer a safe and central location that will be a free, welcoming space with many year-round activities and events for all ages.
What is the plan for Rash Field Park?
Plans include several children's play areas, a skatepark, pavilion, beach volleyball courts, and an open field for events and sports. Renovations to the park will be split into two phases. Phase I includes a children's nature play space, an adventure park, a skatepark, a shade lawn, and a modern pavilion featuring a waterfront café serving food and alcohol with a green roof overlook providing dramatic views of the Baltimore Inner Harbor. Phase II of Rash Field Park will take several more years to complete. Based on prior conversations with the community during the Phase 1 planning process, the concept shown here was developed to consider places for running tracks, an athletic field and beach, exercise equipment, and flexible spaces that can support a variety of group activities.
What is the schedule for the Park?
Construction started in January 2020 and was completed in November of 2021. Rash Field Park is NOW OPEN, and a timeline for design and construction will be prepared for Phase II after a period of public review and feedback collection.
Will the Park be open during construction?
Rash Field Park is NOW OPEN, and a timeline for construction and any closures will be prepared for Phase II after a period of public review and feedback collection.
What are the plans for the café at the new pavilion?
A small café will be built inside the pavilion to service patrons visiting the Park. The café will serve light fare such as sandwiches, salads, soups, etc., and proposals also include beer, wine, and liquor service. Over the coming months, a public process will begin to select a local restauranteur to operate the café.
Why is alcohol service being proposed for the café?
The café is intended to be an amenity for park users, not a destination in itself. Many new parks built across the country, from NYC to Dallas, offer food and alcohol options to patrons. The cafes are used as an additional park amenity and do not generate traffic for the sole purpose of eating and drinking. Any operator would be required to meet with affected communities and present its plan publicly to the Board of Liquor License Commissioners for Baltimore City. The operator would be required to comply with strict guidelines regarding the type of alcohol that is permitted to be served and the hours of operation.
How can neighbors ensure they are protected from any potential impact of the alcohol service at the Park?
Waterfront Partnership employs safety guides that will be assigned to monitor the Park during operating hours. Also, the Baltimore Police Department's Inner Harbor Unit is stationed nearby (in a substation located on the lower level of the Rusty Scupper building).
Will there be public bathrooms at the Park?
Yes. Public bathrooms are included in the Park plans. There will be a men's and women's public restroom, accessible from the east side of the pavilion (closest to the beach volleyball courts). The women's restroom will have four stalls and the men's restroom will have two stalls and two urinals. In addition, the café will have its own set of restrooms.
What is the parking plan for the Park?
Waterfront Partnership is developing a comprehensive parking and transportation plan so families can enjoy the park no matter where they live. The Marina Garage – directly adjacent to the Park – boasts more than 200 parking spaces, and a recent Parking Authority study found ample available street parking along Key Highway by Federal Hill Park. We are committed to directing visitors to off-street and metered parking and the eight bus routes that directly serve the Park.
Who will maintain the site once construction is complete?
Waterfront Partnership is committed to maintaining a beautiful park that is up to the standards kept throughout the Inner Harbor. Negotiations are in effect with the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks to govern management responsibilities at Rash Field.
How will you make sure the Park is a safe place?
Waterfront Partnership has a demonstrated record of partnering with the Baltimore Police Department to create safe, enjoyable experiences at the Inner Harbor and throughout the district. Safety guides patrol from 9:30 AM to 10 PM Sunday-Thursday, and until 11 PM on Friday and Saturday nights. Security cameras and other safety devices will also be installed throughout the Park. BPD's Inner Harbor Unit is stationed directly adjacent to Rash Field in the first floor of the Rusty Scupper building, and Waterfront Partnership's safety team meets regularly with BPD to ensure a safe experience for all park users.
How will Key Highway be impacted during Rash Field Park construction?
Most of the construction at Rash Field Park is expected to take place after the Key Highway resurfacing project is complete. Waterfront Partnership will work with the Department of Transportation to minimize disruptions to Key Highway during Rash Field construction.