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Friday, January 18, 2008

Perkins Homes: Now It's Your Turn

"This is it right here. The Dividing Line Between Little Italy, and Perkins Homes. My mother was from over there and my father was from over there. I used to stand here as child and listen to the two communities living side by side Italian Serenades, and Billie Holiday I don't hear that anymore now all I hear is bang bang bang I'd give anything to hear the old neighborhood sounds again. " The character who recited that recolection was Al Giardello from NBC's "Homicide: Life on the Street. He was talking about the good old days with a retiring friend and how much times have changed in Baltimore. They were no doubt on Eden Street which runs north south between the two communities.Perkins Homes is a public housing development in Southeast Baltimore that was built in the 1940s right around the time soldiers were returning home from World War II. No sooner than the soldiers could unpack their bags the flight to the suburbs was on. Everything surrounding Perkins Homes became either public housing high rises or blighted. The 1980s brought unprecedented change to Baltimore's Inner Harbor. Neighboring communities that were once blighted became the hottest addresses in Maryland. By the 1990s Perkins Homes had outlived its high rise counter parts and Lafayette Courts, Flaghouse Courts, and Broadway Homes had been torn down and replaced with Pleasent View Gardens, Albemarle Sqaure, and Broadway Overlook respectively. These new communities were lower density mixed income town home communities through HOPE VI funding. It was also during the 1990s that an old chunk of abandoned industrial land was redeveloped into Inner Harbor East. This spurred further reinvestment in other neighboring communities like Butchers Hill, Washington Hill, Patterson Park and Greektown.
Today, under the Dixon administration without the help of HOPE VI (Thank you President Bush) is tearing down blighted public housing. O'Donnell Heights and 100 units of Cherry Hill Homes hit the wrecking ball in late 2007 Somerset Homes and Westport Homes Extension are set to be demolished. There is talk of demolishing Douglass Homes and Latrobe Homes as well. All of these homes are blighted and are in desperate need of redevelopment as mixed income communities but this time as higher density mixed use communities as urban living becomes more popular once again. I don't think they've gotten very far in the planning process of what will go in the place of these developments.
Now back to Perkins Homes. It's high time for redevelopment of Perkins Homes. With Perkins Homes, the Western Washington Hill, and City Springs Elementary and Lombard Middle a large enough site can be assembled for redevelopment. What will go in its place will be town homes and apartments. The new homes will be five levels which consist of two two level town homes over top of each other and an apartment below the two town homes.
Lombard Middle is set to be closed and a brand new larger
City Springs Elementary will be built as an Elementary/Middle as more schools continue to close.
The sheer location of Perkins Homes warrants new development. East Baltimore as a whole will become desirable thanks to the Biotech Park north of Hopkins. Now It's Perkins Homes' turn.

9 comments:

emily said...

The city is keeping very closemouthed on Perkins I notice-even Jim Kraft doesn't know what the plans are there. I live in Little Italy and go through there somewhat regularly-it seems like there are less and less people living there, maybe the city is quietly moving them out? I'm guessing the city is holding out for some federal dollars after the next election, and then will redevelop it. City Springs is already a k-8 btw, and a great school.

Spence said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

P.E perkin homes where every body lay or stay but me in G.A SO PEKINS ALLDAY

Anonymous said...

Perkins Homes needs to get torn down ASAP!

Anonymous said...

Perkins needs a new Landlord, Robin Mack is the worst!! She has families of 5 living in one bedroom houses, some houses have no power, I am a resident here in Perkins and someone needs to investigate her and the rest of the employees in the rental office. If the money is surpose to be for restoring the development, then we have a problem!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I grew up in Herring Court in the '40s and '50s. It was always a dismal place. Given the wonderful neighborhood or Fells Point to the south and Little Italy to the west, there is no excuse for this sad community to still be standing. I am hoping to see a development before I die that reflects the history and charm of the surrounding area.

Spence Lean said...

The real estate that Perkins Homes sits on is very valuable given the gentrification of the surrounding areas. The City has a price and a developer has to name and Perkins Homes will be history. So will Douglass Homes. Eventually Ablemarle Square and Boradway Overlook will contain nothing but market rate homes. The public housing will be sold.

Adpower AE said...

Nice Post About Perkins Parts.Thanks for the post, I will look forward to see more posts from your blog.

Anonymous said...

My son will be attending a summer internship at JHMI this summer and wants to enroll in the graduate program at JH Hospital in the fall of 2015. He will live near JHMI and it would be nice if Perkins was cleaned up or removed. I hate to be selfish; however, he is my son.