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Downtown Baltimore Near Lexington Market To Be Revamped

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Derek Valcourt 370x278 Derek Valcourt
Derek Valcourt began working at WJZ in September 2002. His first major...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)–Big changes are in store for the west side of downtown Baltimore along Lexington Street after a $150 million development planned for an entire square block gets the green light from the Maryland Historical Trust.

Derek Valcourt gives us a sneak peak at what the developers have in store.

The idea for the development at Park and Lexington began four years ago. It survived a recession, and now it’s getting the green light.

In eyesight of Lexington Market, an entire city square block is set for a major overhaul.

The area between Howard, Lexington, Park and Fayette streets will soon house what now will be called Lexington Square.

A $150 million mixed-use development will be complete with a new 300-apartment tower and dozens of new retail shops, including clothing, food, and possibly a health club.

M.J. “Jay” Brodie with the Baltimore Development Corporation explains a few of the older buildings there now will be preserved entirely. With some, they’ll save just the facade.

“Because of the historic preservation debate we couldn’t answer the question,” said Brodie. “When I say we— the mayor, the developer, and the city— we couldn’t answer the questions: When is this going to be ready? When can we start talking about a lease? And now we can.

Construction on the project could begin later this year.

Almost all of the entire square is already vacant and in desperate need of repair. What few stores are still open, won’t be for long.

“If it’s going to generate revenue for the city, I’m all for that,” said one constituent.

The development is seen as good news in the rundown area that was once the city’s premier shopping district.

“We also need places to shop around here so we won’t go far,” said Davarn Leach. For “those who don’t have cars, this is wonderful for them.”

“It would be nice for the area because it has gone down quite a lot, so anything to improve it I’m for,” said Joyce Graves.

Once the construction begins later this year, developers hope the project will begin by late 2013 or early 2014.

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