The op-ed piece written by two architects about the Inner Harbor was a disappointment ("Best 'theme' for Inner Harbor: the water," June 8). There's an old saying: "Don't mess with success." And I think what Jim Rouse had in mind is in place today.
With retail business doing poorly in most General Growth properties, this isn't the time to add junk just to fill up vacant areas of the waterfront. I get the feeling of soot and dirt in some of the proposed ideas. Baltimore isn't interested in publicizing foreign ports.
The wackiest of the ideas came from the Greater Baltimore Committee and Ayers Saint Gross architects. What the Inner Harbor doesn't need is a foot bridge to span from Rash Field to Harbor East. Any mechanism that would draw the bridge to let tall sails and large ships pass would certainly fail. Then consider the problems with marine traffic.
Back in the 1960s, Mayor William Donald Schaefer and I put on small boat sailing regattas. They drew contestants and spectators. But just before those sailing races, federal officials wanted to put a highway bridge from Federal Hill across the Inner Harbor to Fells Point. That was soon protested off the drawing boards. But not before it was responsible for the destruction of the East Baltimore neighborhoods where it was to have moved northward.
Before something expensive and poorly conceived is budgeted and begun, let's send all back to come up with some better ideas to blend with what Jim Rouse, Mayor Schaefer and our neighbors in Baltimore could appreciate.
Jim Holechek, Baltimore