Submitted by elephantsandrainbows t3_11pokwr in baltimore

Please help the Locust Point Community save our Community Garden!

Hello all, there is a plot of land in Locust Point that Under Armour owns. For the past five years, they have allowed Locust Point residents to use the space as a community garden. The space is flourishing. We have more than 80 plots, and a thirty person waitlist. This is an incredible community resource that provides green space, community interaction, the opportunity to teach neighborhood children about plants and their importance, shelter for birds, food for pollinators, and more. There are active bee hives on the plot that allow a small business to sell locally-harvested honey.

Under Armour has announced they are planning to sell the plot to a developer to build townhomes. They are soliciting offers right now. The Locust Point Community is asking Under Armour to donate the land to Baltimore Green Space, to preserve the community garden for years to come.

Please sign our petition, and feel free to share!



You must log in or register to comment.

jizzle26 t1_jbzf1ji wrote

Wish UA would sell off some of their surface parking lots first.


elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc1sqb8 wrote

they are going to be selling the Tide Point land (surface lots included) as one parcel in the future!

They are not willing to take a piece and donate it to us for a garden from that, they are set on keeping the parcel together. I think.


PleaseBmoreCharming t1_jbzjoyl wrote

Want to just provide some perspective from a 3rd party who has no emotional tie to this neighborhood or company, as things can get a bit bogged down in hurt feelings when change comes to one's community:

I know it's disappointing that a community asset will potentially be taken away, but when you establish that asset as A LOAN TO THE COMMUNITY from the beginning you are just setting yourself up for that disappointment eventually. Yes, it's UA's land, and you can certainly ask nicely for them to donate it out of the good of their hearts, but you cannot get angry when they don't do that. To get angry at UA for doing that is being just as bad as a neighbor as you think they are being for demanding they be charitable when they have no obligation to do so. Also, as the petition states: "There are multiple benefits available to Under Armour, and we would like to have an opportunity to continue to shape the future of this space together," but I really don't think that's the case. UA is moving to Port Covington in the next 1-2 years, so what happens to a small community garden a mile away from their campus is no concern for a Fortune 1,000 company.


elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc1rocs wrote

Hi, I have no anger towards under armour! They have been a great community partner. There is no more green space in Locust Point, literally every corner is developed.

We were recently scouting new locations for community gardens and unless someone is willing to buy and destroy a building / parking area for us, there are no other spaces!

UA is a massive company with lots of money and this would be a tax donation. They are from the city of Baltimore, and have been in Locust Point for years, and contributing to their green space would be a lovely way to end that partnership.

There are tax benefits to donating the space; also Port Covington is literally adjacent to Locust Point and there is talk between the communities about joint projects / building better access to one another. Under Armour is still a Baltimore business and the hope is this petition demonstrates how much of our community (and their clientele) value this truly unique space!

No animosity towards UA. If they say no I will be bummed but understanding. We have to at least ask.


testy918 t1_jch2cu6 wrote

How many tax dollars did this company get from the city?

Like 300 million? 600million?

Hage they kept their promises for those subsidies and breaks?


Mikel32 t1_jbzexst wrote

I would love to see this keep being a garden but this is prime real estate and in todays market it’s going to go for top dollar and the fact it’s owned by a publicly traded company it’s as good as gone. I hope I’m wrong because I really hate the new home builds that are going in. They suck any kind of charm out of the block let alone neighborhood. God speed.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jbzqxv8 wrote

Give it time. The new developments will weather and age and will after decades become beloved assets to the community, to be protected against all costs from there encroaching space-pods and floating houses that’ll be built.


testy918 t1_jch26er wrote

Oh God no the banner homes with the plastic siding look horrible. Massive building with eensy weeny windows


instantcoffee69 t1_jbz6cxe wrote

Why don't you just buy it from UA? I don't think it's a good president to force the use of private property ("ZONING!!" That's a whole other topic, but not for this discussion) or restrict it's sale.

If you want to buy it from UA, then covert it to a urban park, go for it. You want to ask UA to donate it, go for it. I don't think we should block the sale. It's a private matter between owner and potential buyers.


Keyserchief t1_jbzj0mm wrote

I don't think anyone here is trying to force Under Armor to do anything, or arguing that they would be able to do so if they tried - no one is talking about getting the city involved. UA is free to do just about whatever they please with their property, this just seems to be an earnest appeal to them to not sell it for development. It sounds like it's a nice thing for the community and I hope that they're able to retain it in some form.


ObviousGazelle t1_jbzenrp wrote

Yes but asking nicely and receiving it thankfully, or going about it professionally and just asking for a good sale price and buying it outright or thru a community outreach program instead of coming out the gate swinging confrontationally and demanding something for nothing like you are owed this doesn't scratch that narcissistic itch or make yourself look like a martyr in this day and age of social media or the whole "Fuck you Pay me" mentality Baltimoreans tend to have.

Has anyone contacted under armor? Has there been any effort to put together a bid with sponsorship backing? Or is this just another half assed knee jerk reaction to finding out it's getting sold thru the grapevine?

Don't get me wrong the city has 19,000 properties, sometimes whole city BLOCKS of abandoned fire hazards, trash piles and late 1800's/ early 1900's dilapidated and unrepairable commercial properties that would better serve the community as bulldozed and flattened pieces of public use property but the city would rather cry about "food deserts" and firefighters dying constantly trying to keep the city from burning to the ground, or completely ignored the fact that the few places people are getting away with doing these gardens are basically just where squatting on one of these delinquent properties to grow some kind of food is the only way some people had survived in these wastelands, by pulling themselves out of the blight just to have big business or city hall come along and snatch it away.

Maybe r/Baltimorecitydot could enlighten us on what efforts are being made to control the growth of current blight and reduction of food deserts in the city? Because Locus Point is just one of a handful of gardens in the city that are working and have been for 20 years, one of the FEW positive forces in this city yet completely ignored by city hall.

How about this policy: there are a lot of places where the city could come in and bulldoze out half a city block where there's constant trash, shootings and drug activity. Write a law that simply states in areas of high level blight, crime and especially abando fires (which threaten the lives of everyone in the neighborhood including the firefighters who have to put these things out over and over) any properties not maintained, deemed unrepairable, etc city hall can designate it a "high priority zone" for redevelopment. Condemn and foreclose, take ownership by the city like many already are, and bulldoze the whole thing down to level ground. Offer the site for sale to commercial development with a 10 year tax free incentive to build there as the two main problems holding back companies from doing this on their own are the expense of the teardowns and the ridiculous mentality of city hall where they salivate over "getting something for themselves out of it or it ain't happening". Give it a 2 year maximum period on the market and if nobody bites, it's made into a field with a fence around it and a community board set up to start a garden. Some other ideas, convert a rowhome or building next to this plot to a police substation/community center where basic supplies for emergencies can be stored, a large meeting room for public use like meetings, and so on.

There's some pros and cons I'm skipping over. Obviously. But it's obvious in this city the only way forward is to help ourselves or leave. And I'm not seeing very many ideas that end well. The few things that do work against the blight in the city that don't involve complete gentrification are completely ignored by city hall and if it's not on social media or the news it's ignored.


elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc1s1us wrote

Yes we’ve been in talks directly with UA, this is not through the grape vine. We are demanding nothing? Idk why you’re so hostile


testy918 t1_jch2hbh wrote

Hey don't listen to them, they are being mean!


pbear737 t1_jbz6aos wrote

Thanks for posting! I signed.


sooperdooperboi t1_jc1kjig wrote

Have you inquired about the possibility of raising money to buy the property for the community? If the neighborhood can raise more money than the developer to buy, or make it more profitable than the homes, then the community could just buy it outright. Otherwise I don’t see how you stop UA from selling their property.


dopkick t1_jc0q9yx wrote

First and foremost, let’s keep in mind that community gardens are a hobby. They’re not going to produce enough food to actually sustain families. In practice they’re often not efficiently utilized as well.

I would rather see a more comprehensive strategy for planting things that attract pollinators across the entire city. Why limit it to small plots here and there?

Also, those vacant townhouses that this sub has a hard on for would be much better community gardens. The land is generally not desirable so the city would not be losing out on prospective tax revenue.


elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc1s4xo wrote

Hello! We have garden plots as well as pollinator gardens that run along the whole perimeter of the area, including native bushes and trees. :) We want to make the space as pollinator-friendly as possible


dopkick t1_jc1tesu wrote

Yes, but that can be accomplished at a city-wide level with the existing infrastructure. You don't need valuable land and the city losing tax revenue for your hobby.

Let's assume that 10 townhomes could be built in this space. Let's assume they are $650,000 each. And the people living in them bring in $200,000 per year per unit. All very reasonable assumptions. That's $146,000 per year in real estate taxes and $64,000 per year in income tax. Or $210,000 per year total.

For $210,000 I can hire two people (fully burdened) with the sole task of planting native shrubs. Or I can support your hobby. Not a hard choice.


wake8888 t1_jc26jow wrote

After dozens of dealings with city government, I have a hard time believing the $210k wouldn't be badly squandered instead of hiring two people planting native shrubs. I wouldn't trust the city to follow through unless there was something binding requiring them to do so.


dopkick t1_jc27cre wrote

I don't disagree. However, I still think $210K to subsidize hobbies is ridiculous.


wake8888 t1_jc290io wrote

I agree that there are far more effective ways to spend $210k, should it be properly earmarked somehow. It's only $210k if the City receives the tax though. Since real estate and income taxes go into the City's coffers, we can't trust that it would be used to help LP or even properly at all. I feel like it's a roll of the dice with pretty bad odds that something tangible and net-good would come out of the money should the City receive it. That means it's not really worth $210k to LP unless some responsible party holds it and will use it as such.


dopkick t1_jc2kbe5 wrote

But the point of taxes is that it all rolls up to a single bucket at the strategic level to be spent on the most high impact projects across the city in a timely fashion. LP might see $0 of that $210K be reinvested for 10 years. Then might be the recipients of a $10M project. Saying tax dollars need to be spent exclusively locally basically ensure the rich get much richer and the poor get driven away.


One-Seaworthiness-28 t1_jcbjg12 wrote

Um, no. The number of vacant properties in Baltimore is decreasing at a very fast rate. In 2020 Baltimore had 16,000+ vacant properties and now it is 14,000. There is new legislation within the city currently being sponsored by Odette Ramos so the city can better manage and dispense with vacant properties. We're not turning any vacants into community gardens when they can become revenue generators for the city.


PleaseBmoreCharming t1_jc0i0df wrote

Alternative Idea:

  • Eliminate the parking lot at Latrobe Park and make that community garden instead. That's supposed to be a neighborhood park, right? Why would you need to drive there and need dedicated parking?


  • Find some other space in Latrobe Park to covert to a community garden.

elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc1sczv wrote

The lot is needed for those with disabilities to be able to access the park / maintenance / things like that

We are actively searching for alternatives and finding none! LP is very developed.


One-Seaworthiness-28 t1_jcbfmkn wrote

Which Latrobe Park parking lot are you talking about? The one over by Banner Fields was forced on Locust Point through Under Armour's seizure of the land. Nobody in Locust Point was asked or consulted for that one even though that space was an obviously choice for a community garden. The parking lot on the other side by the school was requested and encouraged by Matt Farkosky, then President of the Locust Point Civic Association, to be built and donated by Walker28. Matt's wife is the kindergarten teacher at Francis Scott Key Elementary and the couple thought additional impervious surface in the park would be a great for the teachers to park on if their school lot was full, never mind the destruction of public park property. The LPCA is the organization that is currently furious with UA for selling the UA owned Haubert Street property. What goes around comes around.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jbz9rwy wrote

This petition smells like NIMBYism


elephantsandrainbows OP t1_jc2dmy5 wrote

Hello, i respectively disagree. I would be happy to help any other community protect an asset that is important to them as well. I think green space preservation across the city is important.

I do not think this should only apply to my neighborhood! However, i do feel i’m properly situated to advocate for my own neighborhood, as I live there


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jc2rhu1 wrote

I do think it’s admirable that you’re passionate about your local community, and I also don’t oppose community gardens in general (see my quip about putting them in parking lots). But I do believe given the housing shortage around the country (and in the Northeast in particular) that building more housing is imperative, and I’ve seen a lot of instances nationwide where locals abuse the idea of “preserving their community” to block development, ultimately harming fellow community members for the reasons I stated elsewhere.


CallMeHelicase t1_jc2hwy8 wrote

We have too many houses in the city and not enough residents. Adding more houses benefits no one, and leads to more vacant houses that kill firefighters. It is so wasteful to build new houses when so many are being knocked down.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jc2qkym wrote

> Adding more houses benefits no one

It would definitely benefit Locust Point renters who would have their rent prices decrease (unless you’re one of the people who thinks building new housing increases rents). It would also benefit people who would want to move there in the future (unless you think, for whatever reason, that more people shouldn’t move there in general).

> And leads to more vacant housing

How does that lead to more vacant housing??? If this was built in a blighted area sure, but I bet new housing in Locust Point would get snatched up like hotcakes.

> It’s wasteful to build more houses

Whose resources are being “wasted?” This is a private developer who will be using their own funds to build housing on land sold by Under Armor, none of whom would otherwise be using their resources to tear down vacant housing.


CallMeHelicase t1_jc418oa wrote

Natural resources matter. The plastics produced for these homes and the lumber that has to be harvested. I don't care if under armor spends money, I care about material waste.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jc45ry9 wrote

New infill housing in a dense, walkable area like Locus Point will result in far less CO2 emissions than in a sprawled out suburb. If you want to criticize material waste in housing, criticize the suburban McMansion hell that characterizes most of America.


wuguwa t1_jbzb4yy wrote

Can you explain what time means?


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jbzcdhi wrote

“NIMBY” stands for “Not in my backyard,” i.e. people who do not want additional construction of housing or infrastructure in their communities. There are a lot of reasons for this, and one commonly cited one is “loss of community character,” which is most likely the OP’s reason for the petition here.

Even if OP’s commitment to preserve their community garden is admirable, the consequences of NIMBYism are extremely severe. The lack of affordable housing due to NIMBYs preventing construction (like the developers wanting to build townhouses here) is directly implicated in rising housing costs and homelessness rates across the country.


AngryGayZionist t1_jbzocfa wrote

LOL. Do you think they'll be building anything resembling or including one iota of affordable housing? No way.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jbzppem wrote

Oh lookee here, a left-NIMBY out in the wild.

What happens is that people who can pay for new “luxury” housing can go live there instead of fighting with low-income residents over pre-existing housing. Simple supply and demand.

But what can I say, we live in a fucked up country where most people think housing gets more expensive the more there is.


AngryGayZionist t1_jbzqhmt wrote

Awww, I bet you also claim trickle down economics actually works. gifgif


shrugsnotdrugs t1_jc0pwdo wrote

I think you’re conflating ideologies and positions. Someone (/u/ice_cold_fahrenheit) advocating for increasing housing density isn’t likely going to be a supporter of trickle-down-economics lmao.


wuguwa t1_jbzdzwb wrote

Got it. Thanks for the additional info.


CallMeHelicase t1_jc2i64q wrote

The housing put in would not be affordable, and we already have too many vacant houses in this city. There is NOT a housing shortage here, and I am surprised you don't understand that.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jc2sw5i wrote

Is there not? Looking at rents in Locust Point and Harbor East, it certainly seems like there’s one to me, even if it’s not as egregious as in other cities. After all it’s not like those particular places have vacant housing - it’s the blighted blocks people are moving out of that bring down the citywide average.

And even if there wasn’t a housing shortage per se, it would be good to build more housing anyways to bring prices even lower. And that can happen while the city gets rid of vacant housing at the same time.


rhymes_with_pail t1_jc3g72x wrote

Any additional housing increases affordability.


CallMeHelicase t1_jc40y8s wrote

Does it? There are so many houses for sale near me and they are all way more than I can afford. I would love for more houses to be available - I just want them to be rehabilitated vacant homes instead of wasting materials building overpriced townhomes that will fall apart in 10 years.

I personally want owners of vacant homes to be forced to sell them if they have been vacant for over two years. I worry that more home construction will lead to more homes that will just become vacant. I am sick of the fires and drug overdoses that happen in vacant homes. I think it is fair to request we fix the ones we already have before building more.


rhymes_with_pail t1_jc7gjis wrote

Yes it does. The more homes where people want to live the lower the costs of individual homes will be. You are conflating two different issues in housing affordability and vacant housing. Why don't you buy a vacant and fix it up if that is so cheap? Because it is not cheap and they aren't in places people want to live. People aren't wasting materials building overpriced townhomes. They are using materials building townhomes at prices people will pay. When those people move out their old cheaper homes become available for people who can afford at that level. ALL new housing lowers average home pricing in an area. The only thing this petition protects is increasing home values in the Locust Point Neighborhood. Do you want homes to be more expensive?


Dangerous_Wave t1_jc09ekp wrote

So explain why they just put 250k townhouses off Cedar Hill Rd in Glen Burnie, less than 2 miles from Church St. That's not affordable for 95% of Baltimoreans.

In addition, the so called "low income" apartments they stuck between Lidl (ritchie hwy) and Chesapeake Art center (hammonds lane) was, last I heard, $1000 for a one bedroom. Also not affordable.

They claim low income right up till it's time to cut the ribbon for real estate agents, then jack the price to the sky because "it cost more to build than expected."


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jc0bea9 wrote

As I explained in my other comment, new development will make overall rents cheaper than what they would’ve otherwise been, regardless of if the new development is affordable, luxury, or anything in between. This article explains it in more detail.

If you suggest they should develop affordable instead of market rate housing, then that’s a fair sentiment, but even market-rate housing will be better than not building at all. If you are actually suggesting not building anything at all, well…

Also I do wonder how common the last thing you said actually is. The usual complaints I see online is about developers advertising “luxury” apartments when they’re just bog-standard 5-over-1s.


testy918 t1_jch2r8a wrote

This is YIMBY,

People want the garden the waitlist for it is like 50+ households.


dudical_dude t1_jbzhz3l wrote

Smells more like a quality of life thing.


ILikeBigBidens t1_jbzw54b wrote

NIMBYism usually improves or protects quality of life for existing residents or property owners, generally at the expense of potential new residents.


ice_cold_fahrenheit t1_jbzzx6r wrote

It’s more NIMBYism protects the property values of existing homeowners (or they think it does) at the expense of both existing renters and potential new renters/homeowners.


rhymes_with_pail t1_jc3fi36 wrote

Which this petition is also trying to do by limiting space for housing.


PleaseBmoreCharming t1_jc0hhah wrote

How would one's quality of life be diminished by building additional housing? Lemme ask this, how are you defining "quality of life" here? If the public facilities and infrastructure is adequate for additional development to be approved, then theoretically quality of life should not be diminished, unless this is a personal preference in which that's not applicable as a reason to prevent the development.