Preserve Polish History in Fells!
The Lemko Community (“Lemko”) located at 603 S. Ann Street, Baltimore, MD 21231 and The National Slavic Museum 501c(3) (“The National Slavic Museum”) located at 1735 Fleet Street, Baltimore, MD 21231 submit this petition to the City of Baltimore and the Department of Housing and Community Development of Baltimore (“DHCD”) to cease the current Request for Proposal Review Committee in process for the former Enoch Pratt Library located at 606-610 S. Ann Street, Baltimore, MD 21231, and to allow for the Lemko Community and The National Slavic Museum to acquire the building.
The property in question is a historical building built by Polish Immigrants prior to the government taking the building and turning it into the Enoch Pratt Library. Since the closing of the library, Lemko has submitted multiple requests to Baltimore City requesting to purchase the property for community development and preservation of Slavic History. This petition requests that the city cease the current RFP process that began in Fall 2020, which was not properly advertised to Lemko and allows Lemko to be in consideration for acquisition of the property.
Lemko and The National Slavic Museum propose to acquire 606-610 S. Ann street to redevelop the space into a Contemporary Gallery Wing for The National Slavic Museum in addition to being a Community Workshop space for Lemko and the neighborhood of Fells Point. The museum would like to use the back outdoor space to create a parking area for the museum and an outdoor garden featuring sculpture artists for the community. The outdoor area would be a walkway between the current museum and the contemporary gallery wing.
The National Slavic Museum is undergoing rebranding for the future stability and preservation of the museum during the Summer of 2021. This new branding will keep in mind community needs and hopes to include the 606-610 property in its future vision. The museum is the only museum in the country that currently presents a collection of Slavic History in the United States and Baltimore City. In addition to hosting the Contemporary Gallery the space will host community events and workshops geared towards the Lemko community across the street and the neighbors of Fells Point.
We request that the city recognizes the importance of preserving this architecture within the Slavic community, in addition to recognizing that our proposal considers new developments that enhance tourism and activity in Fells Point. The proposal for the space keeps in mind the future of Baltimore, brings in new sustainable jobs within the arts and preservation field, and preserves Slavic History.
We request the city recognizes the signatures below as support from the community for the city to place this property in the hands of Lemko and The National Slavic Museum. The museum has already acquired a new curator and director and has been in conversation with an architecture firm and the community on the future of this property. We thank you in advance for your favorable consideration of this petition.
Description of current proposals: https://fellspoint.com/606-south-ann/
Description of Property: https://dhcd.baltimorecity.gov/nd/606-610-s-ann-st...
Link to Proposal from The National Slavic Museum: https://www.beautiful.ai/player/-M_ug87dQSxuQ0RRYrK-