Mayor Scott, BCRP, DHCD Announce Plans for Brand-New Parkview Recreation Center
Thursday Nov 16th, 2023
Mayor Brandon M. Scott, Baltimore City Recreation & Parks (BCRP), the Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD), and officials from the Federal, State, and local levels announced plans for a brand-new Parkview Recreation Center. Parkview is the third of four recreation facilities slated for renovations in connection with the City’s Rec Rollout.
BCRP and DHCD are working in tandem to return a 2.8-acre site — currently inhabited by Parkview Recreation Center and the shuttered Westside Elementary School — to productive use. Both Parkview Recreation Center and Westside Elementary School are slated for demolition.
The City plans to utilize this strong community asset to help fuel subsequent transformational development in the adjacent communities. This project also supports equitable neighborhood development and prioritizing youth which aligns with two of the core Mayor’s Pillars.
“The investments we’re making in providing world-class rec and parks facilities across the city are part of our broader effort to overcome the decades of disinvestment that communities like this one in West Baltimore have endured for decades,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “These rec centers have the potential to be life-changing for everyone -- especially our young people -- in the neighborhoods they serve. By bringing together so many different agencies to make it possible, the Parkview Recreation Center Project is an example of how we’re prioritizing putting these resources in our neighborhoods across government. I want to thank all of the partners at the federal, state, and local level who have been a part of this effort and join all of the residents that will benefit from this renovation project in welcoming this new vision for Rec and Parks in West Baltimore.”
Highlights of the new facility include a large gymnasium, catering kitchen, flexible multipurpose/community rooms, office space, and a robust open fitness area. Additionally, the site will feature a new multi-generational, community-centered park containing a large flexible-use green space for walking, jogging, and skating. The park will also have flat play areas, paths, a picnic pavilion, and a large playground with amphitheater.
“We’re excited about the plans to transform this property into a major community asset. At BCRP, we’re truly committed to ensuring that our residents have access to high-quality, state-of-the-art facilities and services that benefit the overall well-being of our residents,” said BCRP Executive Director Reginald Moore. “The City is grateful to the community and our Federal and State partners for working with us to make our collective vision for this reimagined recreational space a reality, thereby building a better Baltimore.”
This project is expected to cost approximately $12.3 million. The City received an $11.3 million funding commitment from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through DHCD’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. CDBG is a HUD program designed to give local jurisdictions power to distribute federal funds directly to non-profit and public agencies that support housing and public-service programs. Its primary objective is to develop viable communities by providing low- to moderate-income families with decent, affordable housing and to expand local economic opportunities.
“DHCD’s Consolidated Planning team worked diligently to identify the vital resources necessary to help move this project forward,” stated Housing Commissioner Alice Kennedy. “The Community Development Block Grant funding that we have made available for this project is a significant investment of $11.3 million that will strengthen this community, expand opportunity, and improve the overall quality of life. This effort aligns with the Mayor's Pillars for Building a Better Baltimore and will support our efforts to reduce vacant properties on the surrounding blocks.
"With this project, we see the intentionality in choosing to invest over $11 million in CDBG Funds into this neighborhood to create a community asset that has the potential to improve the quality of life for the residents who live here and to jump start the renewal of this historic neighborhood," said Stephanie L. Staats, HUD Baltimore Field Office Director. "HUD is so happy and delighted to be a part of this as a catalyst understanding that this new center will be a safe space to exercise, play, socialize and gather as a community which is so important.”
“In 2015 the eyes of the world converged on Penn North to highlight its flaw," said State Senator Antonio Hayes (District 40). "Today’s announcement of a 21st Century Recreation Center is an affirmation of its Renaissance!”
Demolition work is expected to begin in the coming weeks. The new Parkview Recreation Center is slated for completion in 2025.