The Inner Harbor is the centerpiece of Baltimore and a worldwide tourist attraction. The iconic USS Constellation, the only Civil War ship still afloat, can be seen docked prominently in the landmark seaport. Once a bustling freight shipping center, the Inner Harbor has transformed in recent years into a dynamic urban lifestyle destination, replete with gourmet restaurants, boutique shops, lively entertainment, bars, and nightspots. As a result, the Inner Harbor has been praised by the Urban Land Institute as “the model for post-industrial waterfront redevelopment around the world.”
Situated 40 miles north of Washington, D.C. and 90 miles southwest of Philadelphia, the area is easily accessible via major thoroughfares such as Interstate 95, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, and Interstate 83. Residents and visitors can also take advantage of an array of convenient public transit options including the MTA bus, Light Rail, and the MARC commuter rail. In addition, the Inner Harbor’s famous water taxi offers one-of-a-kind access to and from other prominent Baltimore waterfront neighborhoods such as Fell’s Point, Canton, Federal Hill, and Fort McHenry.
In Maryland’s budget for 2015, former Governor Martin O’Malley earmarked about $2 million for further development of the Inner Harbor, which included funding for the creation of more open green space and the addition of free family-oriented public amenities. The area currently generates about $2.3 billion in economic activity, supports over 21,000 jobs, and accounts for approximately $100 million in annual tax revenue for the city and the state.