Westport Waterfront Construction Begins
Turner Development is pleased to announce that construction has started on the Westport Waterfront. Westport Waterfront is a $1.2B, 50-acre transit-oriented, mixed-use development located on Baltimore's Middle Branch of the Patapsco River. Turner Development has begun construction on the first phase of public improvements including construction of a living shoreline wetland along approximately 900 linear feet of the Patapsco River. $620,500 in American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009 (stimulus) funding awarded by the Maryland Department of the Environment will be a portion of the funding used to reconstruct the shoreline and create the waterfront tidal wetlands.
"The shoreline reconstruction is the first step in making 25 acres of the Westport Waterfront site ready for building construction," said Patrick Turner, president of Turner Development Group. "Our master plan goes beyond a traditional mixed-use community. We're targeting platinum certification under the US Green Building Council's LEED for Neighborhood Development program and the soft shoreline will enhance our efforts."
The intertidal wetland project will include the installation of an environmental cap and wetland sill as well as a floating boom to minimize floating debris in the wetland. Once the wetland reconstruction is underway, construction of new utilities, roads, landscaping and bike paths will commence in the spring of 2010. Construction of a luxury apartment building by the Landex Companies will begin a year later in 2011.
The wetland reconstruction is part of Turner and Baltimore City's strategy to restore the ecology of the Middle Branch, which is home to abundant populations of fish, birds and other wildlife but has suffered from degradation due to decades of industrial development. Restored wetlands improve water quality by filtering contaminants while also providing important habitat for juvenile fish that provide food for larger fish and birds. Wetland restoration in the Middle Branch is a key priority of Baltimore City as it focuses on the redevelopment of the Middle Branch watershed as Baltimore's "green harbor." Turner is planning additional wetland areas in Phase II of his project as part of the development's overall green infrastructure.
The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company will act as construction manager for the shoreline reconstruction, wetland installation and infrastructure construction.
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