ANNAPOLIS, MD—The Maryland Board of Public Works on Wednesday approved the final set of leases to advance Governor Larry Hogan’s sweeping plan to move 12 state agencies to downtown Baltimore and help revitalize the Central Business District. The final two leases approved are for the Maryland Departments of Labor (Labor) and Information Technology (DoIT).
“Nearly two years ago, I announced a plan to revitalize Baltimore’s Central Business District, and in all 12 agencies and more than 3,300 state employees will be moving to modern, vibrant work spaces while saving taxpayers millions of dollars each year,” said Governor Hogan. “This plan will create a tremendous boost to the economic and civic revitalization of downtown Baltimore. I want to thank the Department of General Services for delivering on this ambitious plan, as well as the Downtown Partnership for its commitment to the Central Business District. Working together, we are continuing to change Maryland for the better.”
“Largest Single Influx of Jobs In Downtown’s History”
This week’s vote follows through on the governor’s plan to move more than 3,300 state employees downtown, generating more economic activity for the central business district. “This should be the largest single influx of jobs in downtown’s history,” Shelonda Stokes, president of the Downtown Partnership, said last year, calling it “the important catalyst that we needed in the central business district.”
Board Approves $500,000 Grant For State Center Planning
Earlier this year, Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford announced that the state plans to transfer the State Center complex to Baltimore City for future redevelopment. To advance that plan, the Board of Public Works also approved today a $500,000 grant to Baltimore City to assist the city in planning the redevelopment.
Plan Saves Taxpayers Nearly $8 Million Annually
To advance the governor’s plan, the Department of General Services (DGS) worked collaboratively with state agencies to reduce their space requirements for the new leased facilities. Overall, the state will be vacating nearly 1.3 million square feet of owned office space and relocating into 934,000 square feet of commercial leased space. This represents an approximate annual operating cost savings of over $7.9 million per budget year.
“DGS is excited about the approval of this final set of leases in the relocation of state agencies from State Center,” said DGS Secretary Ellington E. Churchill, Jr. “DGS will continue to move forward with Governor Hogan’s plan to reposition our state buildings by ensuring the agency’s transitions into these leased spaces goes smoothly and efficiently.”
Labor, DoIT Lease Agreement Approved
The Maryland Department of Labor and DOIT have entered into a lease agreement for a total of 126,432 square feet at 100 South Charles Street. The Labor portion of the leased space covers 121,248 square feet to provide office space for more than 820 Labor employees. The DoIT portion of the leased space covers 5,184 square feet and will house DoIT’s 22 employees.
This new location in the heart of the Central Business District will provide state employees with modern and efficient workspace as well as access to enhanced on-site and outdoor amenities including a fitness center, restaurants, and other retail options. DGS negotiated a rental abatement for the first six (6) months of the new lease term, representing savings to taxpayers in the amount of $1,352,822.40.