If you wanted to grow a forest, but had money for only one tree, what would you do? You’d get the best tree you could possibly find and plant it in the middle of where you wanted the forest to grow. Neighborhood revitalization is no different, whether your budget only allows one venue, or an entire block, like The Can Company in Baltimore, Maryland.
The Can Company (noun turned verb) is a renovated one-block industrial campus of a former can company in Baltimore’s Canton neighborhood, with 280,000 sf of offices, retail, restaurants and hidden parking. While it doesn’t lend itself to the urban fabric of the most beautiful streets during the day, the loft-styled interiors are striking and the complex is a visual wonder at night. The truly entrepreneurial developers, Struever Bros. Eccles & Rouse, are considered heroes for their work here and elsewhere in the city.
However, the Can Company’s best feature is nothing architectural. It has become a neighborhood center with free entertainment and fun dining venues, and even more importantly, it’s turned an unsafe, run-down section of town into one of the hottest, coolest places in the city. There’s your forest.