Recreation Pier hotel development moves ahead

March 23, 2010

A long-stalled plan to transform the landmark Recreation Pier in Fells Point into a hotel is moving ahead, say Baltimore officials who announced they closed on the $2 million sale of the dilapidated property to developers. The sale paves the way for a $35 million, 132-room Aloft hotel with a restaurant, said officials with the city's Department of Housing and Community Development. The new owners include city developer J. Joseph Clarke and H&S Properties Development, which built Harbor East. Under an agreement approved in January 2008 by the city's Board of Estimates, the developers agreed to pay the city a $350,000 deposit and up to $1.65 million after the project is complete. The final amount will hinge on the cost of pier restoration, estimated at $8.8 million. Restoration will start after Moran Towing Corp., the sole remaining pier tenant, moves to a facility on S. Clinton Street in Canton by May, city officials said. The project faced delays after the discovery of worse-than-expected deterioration of the pier, which stood in as a police station on the TV drama "Homicide: Life on the Street."

- Lorraine Mirabella

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