Baltimore – Secretary Skinner on Thursday joined Governor O’Malley and Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake for the grand opening of Union Mill, the 19th century building on the banks of the Jones Falls that has become home for young teachers and nonprofits and an award-winning symbol of urban revitalization.
Built in 1866, Union Mill was once the largest producer of cotton duck in the world and the largest stone mill in Maryland. Today it is an urban oasis, combining apartments for newly arrived city teachers, nonprofit organizations, a restaurant and a small gym. The project is modeled after another award winner – Miller’s Court, the transformation of an abandoned tin factory into a community for teachers new to Baltimore and office space.
“Union Mill is a model neighborhood revitalization project, an example of the type of development we help finance all over the state,” Secretary Skinner said. “It puts to productive use an historic building, it created jobs, it serves as an important economic stimulus to this neighborhood and it provides much-needed affordable rental housing for hardworking families, particularly teachers.”
The project was honored last month at the annual meeting of the Maryland Economic Development Association, where it won the organization’s Redevelopment Project award. Miller’s Court won national recognition in 2010 by the Council of State Community Development Agencies and the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials.
Judges said the project set new standards for environmental, historic preservation and socially conscious development.