Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Dumpster This Saturday

Cleanup time! The city will provide a dumpster for residents to use for all sorts of household trash (including bulk items) this Saturday, September 24. The dumpster will arrive at W. 26th St. & Huntingdon Ave around 8:30am and stay till it is full. Residents only please, commercial haulers/dumpers will be turned away.
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Sunday, September 18, 2016

Meet the New Neighbors


April (left) and Louise Isa
By Erin M. Colligan 

The landscape of Remington has changed dramatically over the past year as Remington Row evolved from a giant hole in the ground to a full structure with the signature red brick warehouse style of the Seawall Development. This summer, Remington Row welcomed its first residents. Though construction continues on the office and retail space, the residents began moving in on July 1st. As of August, the building was 89% leased.

Much of Remington Row’s appeal is Remington itself. “The location of Remington is prime for people to travel uptown and downtown,” Seawall’s Shawn Brown said. The apartments are close to Hopkins campus and will even get a JHU shuttle stop. She said people appreciate Remington because they “like the diversity and see the potential and room to grow.”

The diversity is evident in the variety of tenants Remington Row attracts. Its residents include people moving to Baltimore for school and work, longtime Baltimore residents starting new businesses, empty nesters who were tired of shoveling snow and mowing grass, and young families who want their children to experience life in the city.

Sisters and longtime Baltimore residents April (left) and Louise Isa lived in Union Mill in Woodberry before moving to Remington Row. April, who goes by Milly, works for BubbleBall Maryland, a company that comes to special events with sumo-wrester-like bubble outfits for fun and action-packed soccer games. Louise works at an organic market . The Isas fell in love with Remington largely through their frequent visits to Sweet 27; both sisters keep gluten-free diets. They felt more connected to Remington than they did to Woodberry/Hampden. Even with Union Mill’s proximity to the Avenue, Milly and Louise found themselves relying on food delivery services.

Remington, by contrast, has many attractions that bring them out of the house, such as Sweet 27 and Parts & Labor as well as nearby Brown Rice and St. Mary’s Restaurant & Bar. As gamers, the Isa sisters also appreciate Remington’s two Pokestops and the conveniently located GameStop. Most importantly, they are closer to friends with families that already live in Remington; they’re grateful for the opportunity to see their friends’ children grow up.

Kaitlyn Huett and Anderson Miller

Newly engaged couple Kaitlyn Huett, 23, and Anderson Miller, 22, recently moved to Baltimore from Norfolk, Va. Anderson will be attending the University of Maryland School of Dentistry and Kaitlyn can work from home for her sales job. As Virginia Beach natives, they admitted “a concrete jungle is a bit of a change for us, but we love the life that Baltimore has.” They didn’t know much about the city before moving here and Remington was never on their radar but Kaitlyn happened to come across Remington Row in her apartment search. They visited and saw how the neighborhood was being revamped. “Being able to be a part of something up-and-coming was exciting for us.”

Kaitlyn and Anderson have come to appreciate all that Remington has to offer. It’s conveniently located and easy to get downtown or to Towson. There are great local spots within walking distance such as the Dizz, Charmington’s, Sweet 27, and Parts & Labor and the couple is getting a “small town” feeling by becoming regulars at these places.

Elizabeth Nash, 39, her husband Salvatore Pappalardo, 37, and their two daughters, 4 and 2, relocated to Remington Row after living in Towson for two years. They originally moved to Towson from Philadelphia for Salvatore’s job as a professor at Towson University. However, they realized, “We really are city people.” They wanted to raise their children in the city and have that urban experience. Before settling on Remington, they gathered opinions of friends and toured neighborhoods. Not only was Remington convenient to both of their jobs—Elizabeth still takes the train from Penn Station to Philadelphia regularly for work—and their children’s daycare, they also sensed it was a family-friendly place to live.

Although Elizabeth and Salvatore are downsizing as far as their living space—their 2 daughters will be sharing a room in a 2-bedroom apartment—they feel they are gaining in experience. Elizabeth explained that there’s much more time to spend with their children when they’re not maintaining a backyard. With so many amenities in walking distance, they will also get out more and appreciate the neighborhood. Finally, they admire the mix of Remington in terms of racial, language, and age diversity.

Matt Poyton, 29, is also new to Baltimore. He finished his PhD in physical chemistry in May at Penn State University. In his dissertation research, Poyton found that metals such as copper can attach to and damage cell membranes, a finding that has implications for diseases such as Alzheimer’s and autism. Now Poyton and is doing postdoctoral work at JHU Medicine in the lab of Taekjip Ha. He and his colleagues will be doing sophisticated experiments on molecules that can unwind DNA.

Poyton chose Remington mainly because of the affordability. He looked throughout the city and concluded “Remington had the most to offer for the money you have to spend.” He liked that Remington is a relatively quiet neighborhood but there are still things to do, such as at The Dizz, Sweet 27, and Charmington’s. He found the neighborhood accessible and appreciates the proximity to a Hopkins shuttle stop. Poyton also realized it was a good time to move here because there are a lot of new things coming in, such as R. House and the barber shop. After several years in rural Pennsylvania, Poyton is glad to be back in the city, where he has “tons of things to do, right out my front door.”

One common sentiment echoed by the Remington Row tenants is a love for the building itself. Kaitlyn and Anderson found the building to be “stunning,” even in their virtual tour while the building was still 2 x 4’s and dry wall. Milly and Louise describe the “great vibe” of the building. They are excited about the prospect of a brand new building with larger spaces, bike storage, garage parking, and an elevator. As Milly remarked “I like to think the building is kind of sexy.” The fact that Remington Row is a green building was a major selling point for the Nash family. Poyton liked that it was a new building and admired the warehouse style with reclaimed wood. He also cited the garage and gym as major selling points.

Both Seawall and the new residents expressed a desire to live in a walkable community. The developer hopes residents can leave their cars in the garage most of the time. The Isa sisters appreciated that they “don’t have to drive” and have everything they need in walking distance.

Seawall set a goal for Remington Row to be a “community-minded building.” The Isa sisters have gotten involved with the community garden on Fox street. Poyton is looking to volunteer with a mentoring program, and the Nash family plans to get involved in the Greater Remington Improvement Association. Thus, Remington Row will not only offer access to health care and retail, but also a new set of neighbors eager to get involved in the community.



Thursday, September 15, 2016

Things that talk: Empty corner stores


Views expressed on this page are those of the artist and not necessarily those of the Remington Community Newsletter.


Monday, September 12, 2016

Corner Store Chaos

By Josh Greenfeld
In 2013, GRIA submitted a request to the Baltimore City Council to change the zoning of 12 corner-store properties to commercial as part of the ongoing city-wide rezoning process known as Transform Baltimore. This change in zoning would allow businesses to move into the vacant buildings. It would also allow the existing corner stores, which are able to operate only because they are grandfathered in, to change to other types of businesses.

But the city-wide rezoning process is still under debate, and the timing of final passage and implementation is unknown. So starting last Spring, GRIA and many neighbors began an effort to immediately rezone these 12 key corner properties in Remington by passing an independent ordinance through the City Council. In December of 2015, the rezoning ordinance was passed by the Baltimore City Council thanks to Councilmember Carl Stokes, supported by strong resident turnout at the hearings.

In March however, RNA Board Member Doug Armstrong (husband of RNA President Joan Floyd) and former RNA Board Member Romaine Johnson filed a “Petition for Judicial Review” in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City (Case No. 24c15006204). This legal action results in a judge evaluating complaints about the language of a law or the way it was passed. The judge sided with Armstrong and Johnson and voided the ordinance citing a lack of evidence in the factual record showing the ordinance will benefit the entire community rather than only the property owners.

On Aug. 9, GRIA was informed that Armstrong and Johnson took an unusual step, an appeal to their already-successful appeal, in an attempt to block the City Council from taking any action on the rezoning in the near future until after Transform Baltimore is passed. On Aug. 15, GRIA introduced a brand new rezoning bill for the same 12 properties, one that will address the alleged deficiencies the judge found in the previous version, sponsored jointly by Councilmembers Stokes and Mary Pat Clarke.

This new bill will go before the Planning Commission for approval on Sept. 15 before being heard by the Land Use & Transportation Committee of the City Council. GRIA expects the bill to pass and become law in mid-October, at which point the new businesses such as the planned barbershop on the corner of Howard and Lorraine, can open in the neighborhood.



Friday, August 12, 2016

R. House Food Service Jobs, Seawall Holds Job Fair, Posts Online Job Application

Fun, hardworking, and committed to having a great time. Sound like you or someone you know? Come out to our job fair this MONDAY 8/15 from 4:30-6 PM @ 301 W 29th St. to meet the chefs!

Currently hiring for servers, bartenders, bussers, and dishwashers. Application here: bit.ly/2aWYIlT

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Special Food Pantry at Margaret Brent This Friday at Noon




There will be a school food pantry distribution this Friday, July 15, at noon in Margaret Brent cafeteria. This distribution is open to the community. Spread the word and please bring bags if you have them.

Dumpster This Saturday

Cleanup time! The city will provide a dumpster for residents to use for all sorts of household trash (including bulk items) this Saturday, July 16. The dumpster will arrive at W. 26th St. & Huntingdon Ave around 8:30am and stay till it is full. Residents only please, commercial haulers/dumpers will be turned away.
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Monday, July 11, 2016

Join the Campaign for Fair Development


As Remington develops, neighbors are increasingly asking what the changes will mean for them and their place in the community. This summer, United Workers and the Baltimore Housing Roundtable are partnering with GRIA to explore issues of housing and development in the neighborhood. United Workers, through BHR, is working to build a movement for permanently affordable quality housing and community-driven development that meets our basic needs. Together, these groups are knocking on doors and talking to residents about their concerns with housing.

The survey is asking neighbors about their experiences with changes to rental prices or property taxes, if they’re interested in owning a home in the neighborhood, and if they would like to be involved in working with a team of residents to explore a community-driven housing initiative.

Interested in joining this process and talking to your neighbors? Please join our Organizing & Education committee for canvassing every Thursday and Friday night. Contact Adriana Foster if you would like to join, by e-mail, Adriana@unitedworkers.org, or telephone, (210) 825-9925.

We would also like to invite everyone to the next GRIA community meeting on Wednesday, July 20 at 7pm for a Housing Speak-Out! This will be a space for Remington community members to voice their concerns around housing and development in the neighborhood and come together to explore community-driven approaches to affordable housing for our neighborhood.



Wednesday, July 6, 2016

A New Little Free Library at Guardian Angel

The Little Free Library program aims to encourage reading and literacy.


Volunteers at Guardian Angel this week installed a Little Free Library at the church's parish house, 2629 Huntingdon ave. The library's theme is Food & Faith. 

The idea is similar to the "take a penny, leave a penny" jar at your local hardware store. There is no fee or membership involved and if you want to keep a book from the Little Free Library, you should feel free to do so. If you want to add a book to the offerings, just pop it in there. 

Guardian Angel parishioners will curate and resupply the library as needed with books that address the theme, such as cookbooks and books on philosophy and religion, 

The library was built, decorated, and donated by the Baltimore Campaign for Grade Level Reading.

Church members install the library at 2629 Huntingdon ave.
 

Wyman Park Playground Renovation Funded, Learn More on July 20 at 6pm

Friday, July 1, 2016

Charmington's to Seek Packaged Goods Liquor License




Charmington's Cafe will seek a license to sell alcoholic beverages for off-site consumption. If approved, the move would not allow patrons to drink at Charmington's, but would allow the cafe to offer carry-out beer, wine, and liquor Mondays through Saturdays.

The license would be a transfer of the license formerly held by nearby Sterling's Seafood, which operated on W. 29th Street for more than 30 years. Seawall Development acquired the license during the 2015 auction of Sterling's. The company also owns the building in which Charmington's operates at the intersection of W. 26th Street and Howard Street.

Since Sterling's closed and full-service Sav-It Liquors, formerly on 29th, shut down in January, the only places to purchase alcohol in Remington have been bars with carry-out rights such as the Dizz and Long John's Pub.

The license transfer will require the approval of the city liquor board, and residents will have opportunities to voice their opinion in that public process.

Charmington's announced the initiative online on July 1.
"Hello neighbors! I'm writing to let you all know that today, Charmington's submitted an application for a Class A-BWL liquor license. This would be a transfer from what used to be Sterling's packaged goods license, and would be a very similar use from before - a restaurant which also sells alcohol for consumption only off-premises.
If the application and transfer goes through, we would continue to operate as we do now (a light fare cafe), with the addition of some TO-GO ONLY beer, wine, and possibly a very small selection of liquors - we have very limited space for these sales since our primary use as a cafe would note change, so we need to limit our selections. Most likely we would be offering mostly local beers, wines, and liquors. This is a 6 day packaged goods license, so we would be selling these items only Monday-Saturday, though we would continue to be open on Sundays for our regular sales.
If the application is accepted, we will probably be getting a public hearing with the liquor board sometime in the next 6-8 weeks. We will continue to update you on hearing dates. If you live within a few blocks of Charmington's, you can expect to see a flyer or hear me knocking at your door very soon.
We will be seeking testimony at this hearing either in person or in writing, and we will also be creating a petition soon for you to sign if you are in support of this license transfer.
Please email me at amanda@charmingtons.com if you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions about the license or our current and intended operations. We want this to be a service to the community, so it's important to hear from those who live here!
Thanks and have a great 4th of July weekend!"

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Remembering Demetrius Mallisham

By Craig Bettenhausen

Remington has lost a friend. Demetrius Mallisham, 46, was our representative in the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods. Mallisham took ill suddenly despite seeming good health and died of multiple organ failure associated with pancreatitis on April 28th.

A frequent sight at events and meetings around Remington, Mallisham had a hand in most of the good things that have happened for Remington in recent years. He was skilled at building direct collaboration between residents and city employees to get things done. He was a cheerful, warm, and calming person who will be sorely missed here and in the other communities he served.

“He followed up, showed up, and obviously loved the people and neighborhoods he so diligently served,” said City Council member Mary Pat Clarke. “Demetrius was too young and too joyful to be taken from us, leaving us shocked and grieving at such a tragic loss to family, colleagues, and community alike.”

“Demetrius will be sorely missed as an advocate for Remington and as a wonderful and cheerful presence in our meetings,” said 27th Street resident Wynn Engle-Pratt.

GRIA president Ryan Flanigan said, “He went to bat for Remington in the face of tremendous opposition and did so without ever compromising his loyalty to the mayor he worked for. It is public servants like him that push our city to be the place we dream it can be.”

Huntingdon Avenue resident William Hellmann recalls running into Mallisham at a public meeting about slumlords. Hellmann was a tenant of a slumlord and lost around three years of personal documents in the fallout from leaving. Mallisham stepped in and helped him work with city agencies to recover and replace what was possible. “He cared about his work and cared about people.” Hellmann said.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in a statement, “All of us who worked with, and loved, Demetrius knew him as being constantly upbeat, enthusiastic and eager to help,” she said. “For someone who was not originally from Baltimore city, he made Charm City his home. I will never forget the number of times I joined a neighborhood event and saw him joyfully interacting with community members and children. What a champion of our city.”





Monday, May 23, 2016

Parking Study for Lower Remington


By Jed Weeks, GRIA board member

Parking issues have long existed in Lower Remington, where hard-working industry shares streets with houses on almost every block and where many homeowners own more than one vehicle, each of which is wider than the typical rowhome. The recent additions of Clavel (a restaurant) and WC Harlan (a bar) to Lower Remington are welcomed by GRIA, but we also understand that they may bring further parking challenges to the neighborhood.

As a result of these concerns, GRIA, in partnership with the owners of Clavel and WC Harlan, has asked the Department of Transportation and the Parking Authority of Baltimore City to investigate increasing parking on Huntingdon Avenue south of 23rd Street by either installing reverse-angle parking or allowing parking on the west side of Huntingdon. GRIA has also asked for an audit of signage and meters on 23rd and Sisson Streets to see if there are additional spaces that could be used by residents.

If you are interested in participating in these discussions, please attend the GRIA Land Use & Zoning meetings the first Tuesday of every month at 2604 Sisson St. (the Price Modern showroom and office) or the GRIA meeting the third Wednesday of every month at Kromer Hall.