BDC seeks developers for two westside sites, including Mayfair Theatre

The Baltimore Sun

The Baltimore Development Corp. is seeking development proposals for two westside sites, including the former Mayfair Theatre again and a vacant lot two blocks south on Howard Street.

The BDC, the city’s development agency, issued a formal request for proposal for the two sites on Wednesday. Both sites are located in what the BDC calls the Bromo Tower Arts & Entertainment District.

The Mayfair Theatre at 506 N. Howard St. in the Mount Vernon neighborhood dates to 1904, but the site previously served as a gymnasium, an auditorium and a theater. The Mayfair closed in 1986, and the building was damaged in a 2014 fire at an adjacent building.

Preservationists want to see the building’s Beaux Arts facade retained in any redevelopment, and the BDC’s request requires proposals that would renovate and preserve the facade and lobby.

The BDC has sought developers for the site before without any takers, which might be why it packaged the site with the vacant lot, at the corner of Franklin and Howard streets. The properties are zoned for mixed use.

The city hopes any proposal would be market driven with ground-floor uses that increase the daytime and evening population and increase foot traffic in the area, while maintaining the character of the Mayfair.

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