The view of east Baltimore from Amtrak train windows is changing dramatically from previous years.
For decades, the first impression of Baltimore for train passengers traveling from the north through the city was not flattering. It was one of blight and neglect – a formerly solid city neighborhood clearly under distress.
These days, when Amtrak passengers riding through Baltimore’s east side glance from the train window, they get a glimpse of that neighborhood’s future, thanks to a billboard-size banner proclaiming that “Baltimore’s New East Side is on Track.”
The banner, put there by the East Side Development Corporation (EBDI), features an artist’s rendering of the John G. Rangos bioscience facility, and the park-like surroundings that are planned to characterize the massive neighborhood revitalization that is under way on 80 acres that border on the Amtrak right of way.
The project is strongly supported by the Greater Baltimore Committee, for which bioscience business development in the region is a top strategic priority.
The Rangos Building, along with a 74-unit senior apartment complex and a 78-unit workforce housing complex, are the first buildings under construction in the 30-acre initial phase of the east side biopark and neighborhood revitalization project north of the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. The project will ultimately include 2 million square-feet of bioscience lab and office space and 1,200 new or renovated homes. More than 6,000 jobs will be created, experts estimate.
Photo credit: EBDI