Historic Terminal Warehouse would be razed under BG&E plan Owner would put park on waterfront site, pending later development.

April 23, 1992|By Edward Gunts | Edward Gunts,Staff Writer

The six-story Terminal Warehouse, part of the Fells Point historic district and one of the largest buildings on the East Baltimore waterfront, would be demolished and replaced with a combination park, parking lot and waterfront promenade, if the Schmoke administration approves the plan.

Dating from early 1900s and originally used to store cargo shipped through the port of Baltimore, the vacant building at 1601 Thames St. is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The KMS Group, which manages the building for Constellation Properties, a subsidiary of the Baltimore Gas and Electric Co., is seeking city permission to raze the warehouse and landscape the 1.3-acre site until market conditions enable Constellation to move ahead with a replacement project.

The plan marks the second instance in less than two months in which a property owner has sought to raze a historic property in Baltimore and landscape the site for interim uses until the real estate market improves.

The other pending case involves the Southern Hotel at Redwood and Light streets, a 13-story building that a development team wants to replace with a park until it can move ahead with construction of a 46-story office tower.

Before making a decision on the warehouse, Baltimore Housing Commissioner Robert Hearn will conduct a community forum on the proposal. The forum is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. April 29 at the Lemko House, 603 S. Ann Street.

The Terminal Warehouse is the largest single structure on a 12-acre parcel that Constellation owns next to its Brown's Wharf retail and office complex at Broadway and Thames Street.

Kent Johnson, assistant vice president for KMS, said the firm is seeking to raze the building now because it looks as if no new development will occur in the near future and the warehouse has become an "attractive nuisance" that draws vagrants. He also said the building hinders use of the parking lot behind it, and razing it would allow the owner to improve public access to the waterfront and bring parking closer to the first phase of Brown's Wharf.

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