May 26, 2023

RK&K Partners with Women-Led Group to Revitalize a Historic West Baltimore Neighborhood

Site Development group is providing civil engineering tasks for the Women’s Home Preservation project, a multi-purpose community.

RK&K is proud to partner with a women-led group to redevelop a once-thriving corridor of west Baltimore into a multi-purpose community.

Our Site Development group is assisting the Women’s Home Preservation project with multiple civil engineering tasks, including preparing construction documents, coordination with city and regulatory agencies, construction administration, and bond release services.

The project, west of the city’s downtown, plans to redevelop properties that have been vacant since 1978 and were part of a once-thriving community in the city’s historic Union Square neighborhood.

Renderings of the Women’s Home Preservation project in Baltimore, Maryland. RK&K’s Site Development group is providing civil engineering for the multi-purpose community. (Image courtesy: Gensler & Associates)

“We enjoy being able to work for a developer who is rebuilding Baltimore in neighborhoods that need it the most,” said Site Development Project Manager, Danielle Brock, PE.

The developer, Nadine Dlodlo, told WMAR 2 News recently the two main goals for the project are to avoid displacing current residents and build a safe place for single mothers.

“I am a single mom and I understand the difficulties of what it means to live on one income and still yearning something better for your family,” Dlodlo said.

RK&K’s Site Development group is partnering with developers and architects on the Women’s Home Preservation Project on the now-demolished property at 1401 W. Baltimore St. in Baltimore, Maryland

In addition to retail and affordable housing, the plans include a STEM makerspace for neighborhood teenagers to socialize and collaborate in a fun, educational environment.

Brock said the project is exciting for her because it’s being led by Black women.

“Not only is the developer a Black woman, but the lead architect is also a Black woman, and I’m managing it from RK&K’s side. I’ve never seen that dynamic in this industry,” she noted.

Brock said the original architect for the project recommended RK&K to the developer due to the work RK&K is doing with the original architect on a separate major project in Baltimore.

“This project is a full demolition and full redevelopment. With the new plans coming in, we’re coordinating with the city for all the permits to make the design plans happen, discussing zoning regulations, putting together construction details that the contractor needs for outside the building, and coordinating the utility connections. We’re in the initial stages of putting all that information together,” she noted.

“These are neighborhood-changing projects. We’re trying to make a difference and give these communities more hope.”Project Manager Danielle Brock, PE

Brock said the relationship with the developer has been so positive, the developer asked RK&K’s Environmental Group for help with an Environmental Site Assessment for additional properties as part of the larger project.

“These are neighborhood-changing projects. We’re trying to make a difference and give these communities more hope,” she said.

Brock added the buy-in from residents in the Union Square neighborhood has been tremendous.

“Every time we have a meeting, there’s a guy from the community who’s always saying how excited he is. It’s one of those feel-good stories. It’s not a massive project, but we’re doing something for the community. You can’t go wrong when you’re doing good deeds like that,” she said. “It’s going to bring life back to this community and it’s just the start of what this developer wants to do.”

The developer plans to have residents moving in sometime in 2025.

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