Adopt-A-Lot Program

What's New???

The Adopt-A-Lot and Water Access Program are now under the BuyIntoBmore umbrella! What does that mean? You can search and apply for lots using our new, interactive site! If you also need to apply for water, WE NOW ACCEPT PAYMENT ONLINE!!

How does the new, interactive site work?

Option A

1. Search by property address

2. Add the lot(s) to your "cart"

Option B

1. Select Adopt-A-Lot under "Programs"

2. Use the various spatial tools to identify a lot you would like to adopt

3. Add the lot(s) to your "cart"

After the lots have been added to your cart

1. Open your cart

2. Select "Apply" and complete the application

Adopting a city-owned vacant lot can improve living conditions in your neighborhood.  You and your neighbors can create a peaceful and enjoyable space for everyone to share.  It not only improves your neighborhood, it helps the City become a beautiful and productive place to live for everyone!

What is the Adopt-A-Lot Program?

The Baltimore City Department of Housing and Community Development’s Adopt-A-Lot program allows residents, businesses or neighborhood groups to steward and care for city-owned vacant lots in their community.  The program gives you the opportunity to use the Department of Housing and Community Development’s city-owned vacant lots near your home or business for your own benefit and your neighborhood's benefit without the burden of taxes or other financial obligations that come with ownership. 

Who May Participate?

Any Baltimore City resident, civic or non-profit organization, school group, business or neighborhood group committed to caring for the vacant lot in their neighborhood is eligible to adopt a lot from the City of Baltimore.

What Can I Do on an Adopted Lot?

An Adopt-A-Lot license holder is able to create community spaces that include, but is not limited to:

  • Community Gardens

    A community garden is a garden collectively managed by a group of people producing not-for-profit fruits, vegetables, flowers or plants for attractive appearance. These types of applications will require additional vetting and site plans.

  • Clean and Green Spaces

    Clean and green spaces are primarily maintenance and minimal beautification. Examples include mowed grass with perhaps a neighborhood sign and/or small flower beds.

  • Recreational Spaces

    Examples of recreational spaces include chess parks, horseshoe pits, meditation spaces and other passive recreational activities. These types of applications will require additional vetting and site plans.

What CAN’T I Do on an Adopted Lot?

Adopted lots CANNOT be used for:

  • Parking

  • Carwashes

  • Dog Parks

  • Playgrounds

  • For Profit Businesses

Individuals seeking these types of uses should contact DHCD Development Division at 410-396-4111 to speak with a Neighborhood Development Officer to identify an appropriate location.

Where are the lots?

Vacant lots owned by the City of Baltimore are scattered throughout the City.  You can search our map to identify city-owned lots that are available to adopt.  The map will show you which lots are available and which lots have been adopted. 

Additionally, we encourage you to contact the neighborhood development officer for your area. Use the Neighborhood Development Officer Map to see which officer works in your area. 


What is the cost?  How do I adopt?

It is FREE to adopt a lot!  Your application will be reviewed and pending approval, the adoption will be finalized within 60 days.

Apply to Adopt A Lot using our new, interactive site.


What do I do if I have questions or concerns about my adopted lot?

If you have any questions, please contact us at 410-396-4111 or email and your question will be routed appropriately.

Community Managed Open Space Resource Links

A program thru Recreation & Parks that offers garden plots for rent (a small fee) to City residents and employees located in city parks. Some supplies and Community Liaison support were provided.

A blog and online manual provided by The Community Law Center, explain legal concepts that affect urban agriculture including nuisance abatement.

A collective plan was created with an interconnected network of greenspaces throughout the City, helping to strengthen communities through greening efforts.


February 14th   -  Garden Season Opens!  Start Submitting Applications

First Week of October   -  Last week to submit water access and Adopt-A-Lot applications

First Week of November  -  Garden Season Ends!  Applications for water access are not accepted. Existing water connections will be disconnected until next season.

Thank you for your interest in the Baltimore City Adopt-A-Lot Program.  We look forward to working with you and your groups.