The Roland Water Tower is one of north central Baltimore’s most notable sites. Built in 1905, it is a beautiful example of commanding turn-of-the century architecture overlooking Roland Park, Hoes Heights and areas of Hampden. Sadly, as is the case with so many historic sites, this distinct city structure now stands in a state of disrepair, surrounded by a chain-link fence that was installed to protect onlookers from falling pieces of terra cotta.
With support from GHCC and Roland Park Community Foundation, the resident-led group Friends of the Roland Water Tower is working to restore the tower to its original splendor as well as transform its grounds into a community park. Through ongoing fundraising efforts and by successfully nominating the tower for Endangered Maryland, the group is raising what will hopefully end up being enough awareness and resources to bring down that chain-link fence. As the group’s fiscal agent, GHCC will manage the funds that are raised and assist with promoting their efforts to residents in Greater Homewood.
Architect, local resident, and member of Friends of the Roland Water Tower, Matthew Fitzsimmons has been helping to secure the permits needed to begin work on the tower. Fitzsimmons best describes the need for improvement in his statement, “The grounds would provide an intimate and comfortable space for local residents of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy. In its current state of disrepair, and with the installation of a tall chain-link fence, the property is unsafe and unwelcoming. Its [Roland Water Tower] neglected condition also creates a barrier between neighborhoods and an impediment to casual socialization”.
On June 4, Friends of the Roland Water Tower will host Tunes @ the Tower from noon to 3 p.m. The event is free and will feature live bluegrass, food (crepe truck and more) and arts activities for kids. For more information, join their Cause on Facebook, or, if you would like to support their efforts, please visit our website at strongcitybaltimore.org to make a contribution.