BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A new apartment building that is part of a neighborhood revitalization effort opened up to the Park Heights community on Thursday. 

Property developer Pennrose, city and state officials, and the non-profit group Park Heights Renaissance cut the ribbon on the Renaissance Row apartment building after two years of construction. It brings 84 new affordable housing units and 2,300 square feet of office space to the area. 

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“This is what we need to move the needle on redevelopment efforts in Park Heights,” said Yolanda Jiggetts, CEO of Parks Heights Renaissance. 

The development is a significant step for the neighborhood, which has experienced population decline, thousands of vacant buildings and an uptick in crime since the 1960s. 

“When you are a neighborhood that has been disinvested and ignored for the length of time that Park Heights had, and you now see that starting to change, this is a big deal,” said Mayor Brandon Scott. 

The building has one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments for low-income families as well as amenities like a game room and outdoor space. 

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It made one former neighborhood resident Jocelyn Oliver very happy to see reinvestment in the area. 

“I’m so proud,” she said. “The ground was just sitting there so now you know the city and everybody who’s involved in this day have come together and just made it beautiful.” 

Mayor Scott, who grew up in Park Heights, told WJZ that the development is just the beginning of good things to come to the neighborhood. 

“It shows that that Park Heights renaissance is starting and this is just the beginning,” he said. 

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Stetson Miller