IS BALTIMORE THE CITY OF YOUR DREAMS?
Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. But it's a good bet that if any of us had the chance, there are things we would change to make Baltimore more like the city we'd prefer it to be.
How would you improve Baltimore? What modifications would you make? In our Nov. 4 issue, we asked our readers for their suggestions. Following are 25 of the best ideas we received.
POOPER PATROL To upgrade the quality of Baltimore city life, I suggest the following: There should be a number of unmarked citizen patrol cars with four strong men inside. When they spot someone walking their dog, but not cleaning up afterwards, they would leap from the car, grab the owner, rub his or her face in the dog's mess, hit him/her with a rolled-up newspaper and say, "Bad! Bad dog owner!" They would then leap back in the car and drive off. They might be known as the "The Pooper Patrol" and would, I think, help curb the pollution of Baltimore streets, especially in the summer.
Richard Pilcher Baltimore
JUST THE TICKET It would be nice to have a downtown discount center, where on the day of a performance, one could purchase tickets for one-half the regular price.
Tickets to events at Center Stage, the Meyerhoff, the Arena, the Mechanic and the Lyric should be available at this center.
Such a service not only benefits the audience member with limited funds but also the artist and the performing organization by filling the house and increasing the gate receipts.
Cities such as New York and Washington, D.C., operate successful ticket centers which attract tourists as well as local events goers.
Diane M. Hood Baltimore
WHAT'S IN A NAME? My idea for making Baltimore better: Prohibit anyone from holding public office who is socially or romantically linked with any woman named "Hilda Mae."
Steve Hammond Crofton
AWAY WITH CURTIS BAY I propose that the entire community of Curtis Bay be razed and bulldozed, to be replaced by an enormous theme park, on the order of Disneyland or Disney World/Epcot Center. Looney as the concept may first seem, an examination of suitability proves its brilliance.
Most of Curtis Bay's local economy has been depressed since WWII's hostilities, and its need for ships, ended. Curtis Bay's contribution to Baltimore city's revenue base has never been lower. What's left is a ragtag crazy-quilt of dilapidated housing, corner bars and the remains of an impoverished population. A "clean slate" is its only hope. Enter the theme park. Jobs. Income. Taxes. Construction. Outside money invested. More revenue. Vitality. A community rises Phoenix-like from its own ashes.
Brian Cary Sokolow Baltimore
MORE HELP FOR ADDICTS One thing Baltimore needs is a government concerned with treating the city's many drug-addicted residents.
The waiting list for a methadone program can be up to six months long, and they only treat heroin addicts. They do nothing to treat the thousands of cocaine and pill addicts who are seeking help.
Everyday our young people are dying, through overdose and drug-related violence. Instead of making empty promises, and putting our tax dollars into inane projects such as benches reading "The city that reads," Baltimore should use those dollars to establish more treatment programs. Make Baltimore "The city
Wanda L. Jackson Baltimore
WETTING THE CITY'S WHISTLE My ideas to make Baltimore better are geared to attract children, adults and the family.
I would re-engineer the McKeldin Fountain so that each and every hour there would be different beverages for children to drink. The cycle would encompass all the flavors of Kool-Aid, Hawaiian Punch and Gatorade.
I would gut the innards of the Shot Tower. On different levels I would build a Fells Point bar, a Rockefeller Center cafe, a French bistro, a Wild West saloon and a Roaring Twenties speakeasy. Then, and only then, would we truly have a "Shot Tower."
COMPOST SCRIPT I suggest the local municipalities offer a compost pile bounty to all homeowners that maintain a compost pile at their residence. A modest credit off of the annual real estate could be granted to all homeowners who maintain a compost pile for their leaves and grass clippings and other biodegradable material. This would relieve the tremendous pressure on our landfills, lessen the cost of trash pickup and provide clean, healthy mulch for the homeowner.
Charles Chase Solomon Baltimore
BOOKS DOWN UNDER All of us book lovers would like to see Baltimore live up to its reputation as a "city that reads." This could be accomplished in part by establishing branch mini-libraries at subway stations, the way Atlanta has experimented with its Decatur station.
We could also use a few more mailboxes, and more clocks outside tall buildings.
Celia Huan Baltimore