BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Fixing up a first impression. That’s what Baltimore is doing along the Amtrak route leading into the city.
Alex DeMetrick reports it’s designed to give train passengers a better view and neighborhoods a better life.
The northeast corridor is Amtrak’s heavily traveled route, running right through the middle of Baltimore.
But what passengers see first is the last thing the city wants to show off.
Boarded up and burned out row houses and trash strewn vacant lots.
To improve that view, the city has brought together organizations to take down those abandoned properties. And while the paperwork says demolition, it’s more deconstruction to recycle building material and lives.
The workers are hired right out of the neighborhood.
“This job has meant for me a life. Given me a chance to start all over again to help my family out, to help myself out,” Bernadette Buckson, a details employee said.
While this project may focus on the Amtrak route, it isn’t the only goal.
“Our community members who want better for themselves and their neighbors and who are willing to work for it. That’s what this is about,” Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said.
Removing the blight of that first impression is a way of bringing income and a neighborhood up.
“So the folks who come to work for us for a year, two years, use this as a lunching point to go into a better job,” Jeff Carroll, Inspire Director, said.
The green tracks project aims for a park like setting along the rail line.
A better view for those passing thorough and better conditions for those living here.
At the same time abandoned homes are being taken down, others in the neighborhood are being rehabbed for low-income buyers.
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