Greetings in Christ,
After extensive investigation and analysis by third-party experts, receipt of the recommendations of the Building & Maintenance and the Real Estate Committees, the approval of Parish Council, and concurrence of the General Assembly at its meeting on November 20, 2022, the Cathedral filed an application with the Baltimore City Commission for Historic and Architectural Preservation (CHAP) to request approval to demolish five (5) vacant townhouses at 35-43 W. Preston Street (the “Properties”).
The Properties were acquired by the Cathedral in the mid-1990s and early 2000s and were already in a state of disrepair at that time. The Cathedral, being a responsible steward in the operation and maintenance of its facilities, has invested at least $90,000 to repair and preserve the Properties. Despite these efforts, they have continued to deteriorate to a point where they have lost their structural integrity, cannot be preserved, and do not serve the Cathedral’s religious mission; nor is it economically feasible to salvage and restore them to a usable state. A recent report from a licensed structural engineer confirms that the structures are damaged beyond reasonable repair and should be demolished.
In light of the tragic death of three firefighters earlier this year in a vacant structure, the Cathedral is deeply concerned about the hazard the existing structures pose to the public and wishes to utilize the Properties in a manner more consistent with, and in furtherance of, its religious mission (such as a prayer garden, and outdoor space for the Cathedral’s religious ministries and faith-based gatherings).
The Cathedral will be meeting with neighbors and stakeholders to further explain the comprehensive process it conducted for the Properties, hear any concerns, and discuss its proposed future plans.
Any parishioners with any questions should feel free to contact the Parish Council via email at email@example.com.
24W Preston St, Baltimore, MD
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