Located in the geographic heart of Baltimore, Johnston Square is one of dozens of Baltimore’s hyper-segregated “Black Butterfly” neighborhoods that has suffered generations of disinvestment, population loss, and extreme poverty. It is currently among the most distressed areas of Baltimore. The mission of Rebuild Johnston Square Neighborhood Organization (RJSNO) is to develop Johnston Square into a model community in Baltimore City by building community power, creating open spaces and recreational opportunities, improving local beautification and public safety, and fostering the revitalization of the community without displacement.
This site is a string of vacant lots, now just turf, that could be transformed into an urban oasis and contemplative garden. CSX trains run under this site, which prevents it from being developed beyond a green space. RJSNO has established a strong partnership with the Green Spring Valley Garden Club, which has provided essential materials, labor, and design for the existing greened lots. The Garden Club would continue to be a partner in this endeavor, providing long-term maintenance. Given its larger size and visibility, this site has the potential to be catalytic for this neighborhood.