Series

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

For nearly two decades, Maryland law has allowed community associations to sue the owners of blighted properties to force repairs. But it wasn’t until this year that any of those associations managed to win anything because of a quirk in the law that kept them out of court.

This is the story of how six Baltimore City associations pulled off that victory.

Mr. Key's Questions

Sep 15, 2014

As we all know, the first line of the first stanza of Francis Scott Key’s poem, the Defense of Ft. McHenry, talks about the “dawn’s early light.” So, why did the folks at Fort McHenry wait till 9 a.m. Sunday to raise that giant replica of the 1814 flag that inspired Key and say it was going up at the very moment 200 years later that Key saw the flag?

Joel McCord / WYPR

The Baltimore Ravens open their preseason campaign at M&T Bank Stadium Thursday with a new inside linebacker, a new nose tackle and a new singer to deliver the national anthem, Baltimore native Joey Odoms.

Community advocates are looking at attacking two of Baltimore’s biggest problems – 16,000 vacant houses that blight blocks of the city and the need for affordable housing – with community land trusts.

The first impression train travelers from the north get of Baltimore isn’t a very good one.

And that makes potential investors leery of the city.

The train rolls past older, active neighborhoods at first. But once past Frank Bocek Park, the scenery changes to block after block of crumbling, vacant houses, right in the shadow of Johns Hopkins Hospital’s famous.  Some roofs have caved in and windows are broken.  Sometimes walls have crumbled away entirely, leaving the interior of the houses visible.

Gwendolyn Glenn / WYPR

At some schools in Baltimore city, 65 percent of students miss 20 or more days of school annually.


Another installment in our year-long series Empty Desks: The Effects of Chronic Absenteeism

An old port city, a once thriving steel city, Baltimore shocked the world 30 years ago when it became a tourist and convention city.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake is right when she says the demands of the neighborhoods have to be balanced with demands of the city’s visible developments.

Some say cities are being re-born in patches, spreading like pieces of pepperoni all over the urban landscape.

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