Attracting Business To Baltimore's Downtown Core (BBJ Story)
The struggles of Baltimore's downtown core in attracting businesses, reducing crime and lowering vacancy rates have become magnified as the city aims to pull out of the Covid-19 pandemic.
That was a theme during an hour-long webinar Tuesday that featured three of central Baltimore's top property owners and managers: Terry Cotten, a manager at Southern Management, Jeff Clary, partner at Grander Capital Partners LLC, and Louis J. Kousouris III, executive vice president of Artemis Properties, Inc. The panel spoke about the work that faces them as part of restarting the daily rhythm in the central business district as offices begin to reopen and workers return. They were both optimistic and realistic about the challenges — and all said a more open dialogue with elected city leaders was essential to making it work as Baltimore's leadership prepares to change hands at City Hall in December. Shelonda Stokes, the newly appointed president of the partnership, said the city's outdoor park space would be key gathering spots once workers return to offices. Covid-19's impact on indoor dining and entertainment has forced a reassessment of that space. Kousouris said a small park near an Artemis-owned property at One Charles Center at Baltimore and Charles streets was being primed for more use. Hopkins Plaza nearby would also be a central outdoor location.