Since its founding in 2003 to manage the project, East Baltimore
Development Inc. has relocated 584 families to healthier neighborhoods
and cleared 31 acres.
A case-management model of family services provides residents with
access to legal, financial, housing and employment counseling. Workforce
development and educational initiatives are expanding economic
opportunities for residents.
In Spring 2008, the first building in the Science + Technology Park
at Johns Hopkins opened for biotechnology tenants, and as of Summer
2009, 220 new residential units were available for leasing and
In August 2009, EBDI opened a new public elementary school that will
serve neighborhood children and the community at large. The school will
operate in temporary quarters in the EBDI footprint while a 7-acre
campus for the permanent school is under construction.
East Baltimore was once an economically healthy, thriving community, where families enjoyed a deep sense of community pride. While the residents have been one of the community’s greatest resources, over time the neighborhood suffered from years of disinvestment, blight, and crime. As a result, East Baltimore families and children have consistently experienced some of the worst outcomes in Baltimore in basic quality of life indicators such as employment, health, educational achievement, adequate housing, and crime and safety.
Over the past decade alone, East Baltimore1 saw a steady decline in population while housing vacancy rates continued to increase. The crime rate in 2004 was nearly double the rate for the City as a whole. The median sales price of an East Baltimore home in 2004 was nearly half the median for the City. More than one-third of all families in East Baltimore had incomes below the poverty level and the median household income was half that of the City’s. While 14 percent of the population aged 16 to 64 were unemployed, 41 percent were not in the labor force (not working and not looking for work). Infant mortality was nearly double the City’s rate of 14 per thousand.
Despite its social and economic challenges, East Baltimore was rich with community assets. The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore’s largest private employer and one of its biggest economic assets, anchors the East Baltimore neighborhood. A powerful base of churches, local neighborhood service organizations, and community groups such as the Historic East Baltimore Community Action Coalition (HEBCAC), the Middle East Community Organization (MECO), and the Save Middle East Action Committee (SMEAC), along with community residents, the City of Baltimore, the State of Maryland, and local philanthropies came together in 2002 to plan for this groundbreaking effort to revitalize East Baltimore.
The East Baltimore Redevelopment Project is an ambitious plan to stabilize and revitalize an 88-acre community in East Baltimore by transforming the neighborhood into a healthier, thriving community, now called Eager Park, for families and children. East Baltimore Development, Inc. (the non-profit organization formed to lead the revitalization of East Baltimore), Johns Hopkins, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the City of Baltimore, the State of Maryland, and others are partnering in this initiative to create a more vibrant community with and for East Baltimore residents.