BALTIMORE — The rapidly-redeveloping area around the Johns Hopkins Hospital complex in East Baltimore is now set to get more than 60 new homes.
The $16 million "Eager Landing" development will bring 66 to 70 affordable and market-rate townhomes, single-family homes and two-unit townhomes to the north end of Eager Park, at East Biddle and North Wolfe streets, by the summer of 2024.
The husband-and-wife development team of Kyara Gray and Khalil Uqdah, who founded Charm City Buyers, said in a press release:
It is our mission to eradicate vacant properties and revitalize communities historically under-served and under-invested. Through our development projects, we want to increase homeownership of black families and close the racial wealth gap.
East Baltimore Development, Inc., announced today that it gave Eager Park Partners, LLC, development rights to two parcels. EBDI had sought developers for the land in 2021, and chose Eager Park Partners - a new partnership between Charm City Buyers and Mayson Dixon Properties & Development - to do the project.
Cheryl Washington, President & CEO of EBDI, said in the release:
We have made significant progress over the last few years but there is much more work to do. Through our partnership with Eager Park Partners, we will continue to advance our plan to eliminate the blight of vacant homes, create opportunities for local residents and businesses, and restore this community to a thriving, inclusive, safe and beautiful place for families to live
Eager Park Partners' "community-oriented approach demonstrates a sound commitment to support and invest into the next generation of Black developers," said State Senator Cory McCray, who represents the area, in a statement.
EBDI has been working to revitalize 88 acres in East Baltimore, and said the first two phases of houses in Eager Park "sold quickly, before construction was completed, in response to the excitement for housing options near Johns Hopkins Hospital."
Baltimore City has struggled for decades to deal with its housing blight. Upwards of 16,000 houses are officially deemed vacant; some housing advocates believe the number is much higher, as there are even more so-called "unoccupied" houses.
Eager Park Partners is a 75% Black-owned, 25% women-owned, 100% locally-owned development firm, and this will be their first development in partnership with EBDI. Charm City Buyers' leaders have collectively built more than 350 houses, redeveloping dozens of properties in the Broadway East community, according to the press release. About 740 families in east Baltimore were displaced by eminent domain 20 years ago.
Mayson Dixon Properties co-founder Jayson Williams has a construction company named Modern Builders that recently got a contract from Whiting Turner to build the new Under Armour campus in South Baltimore.