News from the DNR Office of Communications

Governor O'Malley Announces BPW Approval To Develop New Park In Baltimore City

Projects in Baltimore, Charles and Talbot Counties also Approved

Annapolis, Md. (January 26, 2011) — Governor Martin O’Malley today announced Board of Public Works (BPW) approval to develop Pierce’s Park, a new park at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor through
Program Open Space.

"We are excited to create this significant new opportunity for Baltimore City families to get outside and enjoy our beautiful State,” said Governor O’Malley. “Through Program Open Space, we continue to ensure that every Marylander lives within 15 minutes of open space dedicated to outdoors recreation.”

Baltimore City will receive $1 million for the development, including native plant landscaping, creative spaces, climbing sculptures and fencing. The park will be constructed with a commitment to sustainability and will rely on native plant species and recycled materials. It will also include rain gardens and natural materials around which children can be educated about the environment.

“I want to thank Governor O’Malley and the Department of Natural Resources for their support of a new park in Baltimore,” said Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. “Converting open space into a public park with native plants and rain gardens will give residents and visitors another way to celebrate the beauty of our great city.”

The board also approved the following local-side Program Open Space projects:

Baltimore County will receive $363,949 to design and construct a field lighting system at North Point Government Center Field. The proposed outdoor recreational lighting system will be energy efficient and minimize light pollution.

Charles County will receive $227,000 to acquire 202 acres at Pomfret Park for passive and active recreation and to conserve the natural buffer adjacent to Mattawoman Creek.

"Pomfret Park represents a tremendous acquisition for Charles County,” said Tom Roland, chief of Charles County Parks and Recreation. “Not only will this parkland eventually provide recreational opportunities for our residents, but it also will serve as a natural buffer area for Mattawoman Creek —- a significant tributary of the Chesapeake Bay."

Talbot County will receive $137,317 to install a road and access area for Fleetwood Park/Lewistown Road Park, a new County regional park. Development of the park will include trails, an area to launch kayaks or canoes and an observation deck overlooking Norwich Creek. Pavilions will be placed to overlook the waterway for picnicking.

Under the leadership of Governor O’Malley, the Board of Public Works has approved funding for 959 local recreational projects, including Community Parks & Playgrounds, since 2007.

A video showing the direct benefits of Program Open Space can be viewed here.

The three-member Board of Public Works is composed of Governor O’Malley (chair), Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot. The BPW is authorized by the General Assembly to approve major construction and consultant contracts, equipment purchases, property transactions and other procurement actions.

   January 26, 2011

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages nearly one-half million acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 11 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at