$535 Million sought from city to aid Port Covington development.

Port Covington development company seeks aid from City of Baltimore

According to an article in the Capital Gazette (March 9, 2016) the developers of the “new” Port Covington are asking the City of Baltimore to provide $535,000,000.00 in aid for infrastructure needs based on proposed development plans. For more details, see this source: http://www.capitalgazette.com/bs-bz-port-covington-tif-20160309-story.html

Wow, the people of Baltimore will get to be a part of this wonderful new project – by… (need to write an editorial here)…

…Actually, a rather detailed article weighing the pros and cons and who will benefit the most and who will benefit the least, was just published by the Baltimore Brew (March 10, 2016). Everyone who pays property taxes and/or income taxes to the City of Baltimore should read this: https://www.baltimorebrew.com/2016/03/09/baltimore-reacts-in-some-cases-bitingly-to-535m-port-covington-tif/.

Added March 26,2016: Facts and myths about the Under Armour TIF – explaining the impact of the City involvement in Port Covington and how it will affect the taxpayers of Baltimore. Very good article explaining that it will cost taxpayers nothing but will yield long-term benefits for our city, which will ultimately be beneficial for all residents and taxpayers.

What are YOUR thoughts? (Please leave a comment.)

The First Port Covington Website

12+ years of Port Covington .com

The first iteration of the PortCovington.com website was recorded by the Internet Archive “Wayback Machine” on February 2, 2004, just over a week after the domain was first registered (01/24/04). As near as we can tell, this was the first website solely about Port Covington and its role as a South Baltimore “neighborhood” among the myriad and diverse neighborhoods in the City of Baltimore.

Port Covington Original WebsiteThe small bit of narrative in the image above was much as the “intro” to the site is today. It reads: ‘In mid-2002, the world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart, opened its first Baltimore City stores at Port Covington in the South Baltimore area. Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club are the first retailers to locate in the new Port Covington Shopping Center, a 60-acre, waterfront site on East Cromwell Street. Several hundred City jobs were created when the 142,000 square foot Wal-Mart and the 130,000 square foot Sam’s Club opened their doors. This strategically-located retail development at the site of a former City rail yard has come a long way – but has a long way yet to go. Watch for further development of this “newest” of waterfront destinations.’

Port Covington Website in 2008
Here is a screen shot of the Port Covington Website from 2008, nearly eight years ago.

The few links were to existing, local websites, four of which exist today, Including our own South Baltimore directory website. The Digital Harbor domain now redirects to PortCovington because we believe this location will become home to many “digital” enterprises.

There was not much done to develop the website in the last dozen years because not much has been done to develop Port Covington for most of that time. Although the proposals were impressive, the WalMart and Sam’s Club and curbing and intersections never amounted to much at all. The Sam’s closed after a brief run – WalMart fared better but one store does not a community make. The Sam’s Club building remained vacant and unoccupied for nearly a decade until the CEO of Under Armour, Kevin Plank, had the vision to see what it could (and will) become.

History of Port Covington

USGS image of Port CovingonTinkerer’s Paradise and Ghosts in Port Covington

We’ve been looking for a comprehensive history of Port Covington since this website began over a dozen years ago. We have found “bits and pieces” of the story in several different places – but never did manage to tie any of it together and put it in an article. Until a recent bit of “controversy*” brought this research to the attention of many who are interested in the new development of this historic segment of South Baltimore.

The historical paper/essay, entitled “Port Covington: The Ghost of the Masterplan in Tinkerer’s Paradise,” was the work of Eric Leshinsky (Austin, TX) and Fred Scharmen (Baltimore, MD). It was originally presented at the “City from Below Conference” in 2009.  (www.CityFromBelow.org ???)

Port Covington has, evidently, had a long and varied history – with successes and failures. The current proposal for the (re)development of Port Covington should [finally] be the next step in Tinkerer’s Paradise and will be one of lasting progress for generations to come.


*An Op-Ed opinion in a local newspaper was cited as not having properly cited the two authors of the original piece. (’nuff said)


Finalists for the Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize



The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts announces the finalists for the 11th annual Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize.  The finalists are Theo Anthony, Stephanie Barber, Darcie Book, Larry Cook, FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture, Eric Kruszewski and Christos Palios. The competition awards a $25,000 fellowship to assist in furthering the career of a visual artist or visual artist collaborators living and working in the Greater Baltimore region. The prize gives artists an opportunity to exhibit their work at The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA), which is renowned for its collection of modern and contemporary art. The Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize is held in conjunction with the annual Artscape juried exhibition and produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts in partnership with the BMA and the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA).  The competition winner is announced during an award ceremony and reception on Saturday, July 9, 2016 at 7pm at The Baltimore Museum of Art, located at 10 Art Museum Drive.

The finalists’ works of art will be exhibited in the BMA’s Thalheimer special exhibition galleries from Wednesday, June 22 through Sunday, July 31, 2016. The winner of the competition is selected from the exhibition at the BMA, after a review of the installed art and an interview with each finalist by the jurors.  The 2016 competition jurors are Tim Griffin, Rujeko Hockley and Mia Locks.


Theo Anthony (Baltimore, MD) is a filmmaker and photographer whose documentary work has been featured by The Atlantic, Vice, Al Jazeera, Agence France-Presse and other international media outlets. His films have received premieres at the Toronto International Film Festival, Rotterdam International Film Festival, and Anthology Film Archives. He has been an artist-in-residence at Yaddo (Saratoga Springs, NY), as well as the Werner Herzog’s Rogue Film School. He was recently named in Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” for 2015. His first feature film will be released in 2016.  Anthony is a 2012 graduate of Oberlin College.

Stephanie Barber (Balitmore, MD) is an American artist and writer. She has created a poetic, conceptual and philosophical body of work in a variety of media. Her videos are concerned with the content, musicality and experiential qualities of language and her language is concerned with the emotional impact of moments and ideas. Barber’s films and videos have been screened nationally and internationally in solo and group shows at The Museum of Modern Art (New York, NY), Tate Modern (London, England), Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, NY), The Paris Cinematheque (Paris, France), Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN), The Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles, CA), The Wexner Center for the Arts (Columbus, OH), among other galleries, museums and festivals. Her books Night Moves and These Here Separated were published by Publishing Genius Press (Atlanta, GA) in 2013 and 2010 respectively. Her recent collection of very short stories All The People was published by Ink Press Productions (Baltimore, MD) in 2015. Barber is currently a resident artist at The Mount Royal School of Art, MFA candidate for Interdisciplinary Art at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, MD and a teaching artist at The Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College (Annandale-on-Hudson, NY).

Darcie Book (Baltimore, MD) is a painter and installation artist whose work explores paint as an object and architecture. She attended the Vermont Studio Center Artist Residency in April 2015. Book’s work has been featured in exhibitions locally and nationally including Manifest Gallery’s FRESH PAINT Biennial (Cincinnati, OH) and the Maryland Artist Registry Juried Exhibition at Maryland Art Place (Baltimore, MD) as well as at Elizabeth Myers Mitchell Gallery (Annapolis, MD), Samson Gallery (Boston, MA), Current Gallery (Baltimore, MD), Metro Gallery (Baltimore, MD), School 33 Art Center (Baltimore, MD), The Art Barn Gallery (Santa Fe, NM) and The Contemporary Museum (Baltimore, MD). Her exhibitions have been reviewed inSculpture Magazine, The Baltimore Sun, and the Baltimore City Paper. She has had three solo exhibitions in Baltimore, MD, including Borderlands at the Hamilton Gallery (Baltimore, MD). Her work is featured in collections in Ireland and Nigeria as well as across the United States. Established in 2011, Book is a founding member of A.M. Art Collective. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2004.

Larry Cook (Landover Hills, MD), a 2013 Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize finalist and former Hamiltonian Fellow (2013-2015), has been included in various group shows including How We Lost DC at the Honfleur Gallery (Washington, D.C.), The Image of Black at Galerie Myrtis (Baltimore, MD) and Artist Citizen at Hemphill Fine Arts (Washington, D.C.). Cook’s photographs, sculptures and videos have also been featured in solo exhibitions at Hamiltonian Gallery (Washington, D.C.), (e)merge art fair (Washington, D.C.), Stamp Gallery (College Park, MD) and Pleasant Plains Workshop (Washington, D.C.). In 2014, he had a large-scale public artwork on view as part of Ceremonies of Dark Men, part of the 5 X 5 Project Public Art, curated by A.M. Weaver and organized by the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities. A native of Landover, MD, Larry has taught Photography at The George Washington University (Washington, D.C.), American University (Washington, D.C.) and is currently a visual art teacher at Northwestern High School in Hyattsville, MD. He is represented by Galerie Myrtis located in Baltimore, MD. Cook received his Master of Fine Arts from The George Washington University in 2013.

FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture (Baltimore, MD) is an artist and activist collaboration whose mission is to upset the culture of rape and promote a culture of consent. Founded in 2010, FORCE is led by Hannah Brancato (Baltimore, MD) and Rebecca Nagle (Baltimore, MD,) both creative educators, organizers, and activists. Nationally known for producing large-scale public art projects and campaigns, FORCE believes that a more difficult and honest conversation needs to happen in America to face the realities of sexual violence, and to envision a world where sex is empowering and pleasurable rather than coercive and violent. FORCE’s work has been covered by dozens of news outlets, including The New York Times, Fast Company, CNN, MSNBC and NPR. Brancato teaches at the Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore, MD), where she earned her Master of Fine Arts in Community Art in 2011. Nagle is the founding director of the No Boundaries Coalition, a resident-led organization bringing neighborhoods together across race and class lines, and has exhibited internationally at the New Museum (New York, NY), Ssamzi Art Warehouse (Seoul, Korea), Eyebeam (Brooklyn, NY), Dixon Place (New York, NY), La Mama Experimental Theatre Club (New York, NY) and the Walters Art Museum (Baltimore, MD).

Eric Kruszewski (Washington, D.C.) is an editorial photographer and videographer whose documentary and journalism work focuses on people who have undergone transitions in life, individuals and groups who are marginalized by society and unique subcultures that might not receive mainstream attention. His work has been published by such organizations as National Geographic, National Geographic Traveler, CNN, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, ABC News, AARP and World Wildlife Fund, among others. Eric’s imagery has received awards from National Geographic, the Lucie Awards, International Photography Awards and Travel Photographer of the Year, among others. His photographs and videos have been featured in group exhibitions, including the Lucie Awards at Carnegie Hall (New York, NY), International Photography Awards at Smashbox Studios (Los Angeles, CA),Occupy Wall Street at the Museum of New York (New York, NY), International Photography Awards at Splashlight (New York, NY) and Travel Photographer of the Year at the Royal Geographic Society (London, England). Eric’s work is represented by National Geographic Creative.
Christos J. Palios (Baltimore, MD) is a Greek-American photographer whose work probes ideas and aspects of identity, memory and isolation within urban, industrial, and natural spaces and has exhibited his work locally and nationally. Venues include the Barrett Art Center (Poughkeepsie, NY), Kadoya Gallery (Pueblo, CO), PhotoPlace Gallery (Middlebury, VT), the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History (Albuquerque, NM), and the Athenaeum (Alexandria, VA). His work has been reviewed by online photography publications such as F-Stop Magazine and Dotphotozine, and it resides in several private and public collections throughout the nation including The Museum of Life and Sciences (Durham, NC), LinkedIn (Chicago, IL), T. Rowe Price (Baltimore, MD), Hotel Indigo (Baltimore, MD), and the Veterans Affairs Regional Headquarters (Atlanta, GA). Palios received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

The 2016 Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize is made possible through the generous support of the the Abell Foundation, Alex. Brown & Sons Charitable Foundation, Charlesmead Foundation, Ellen Sondheim Dankert, France-Merrick Foundation, Hecht-Levi Foundation, Legg Mason, M&T Charitable Foundation, Amy & Chuck Newhall, Henry & Ruth Blaustein Rosenberg Foundation, M. Sigmund & Barbara Shapiro Philanthropic Fund, John Sondheim and The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company.

For more information on the Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize, call 410-752-8632 or visit www.artscape.org.  For more information on the Baltimore Museum of Art, call (443) 573-1700 or visit www.artbma.org.


Megan Bosse | Communications Associate | BALTIMORE OFFICE OF PROMOTION & THE ARTS | 443-263-4311 (direct) | 443-838-8863 (cell) |mbosse@promotionandarts.org | 10 E. Baltimore St., 10th Floor | Baltimore, MD 21202 | www.promotionandarts.org