When President Joe Biden expeditiously announced that the federal government would cover the full cost of rebuilding the Key Bridge, I was instantly reminded of the tenacity of William Donald Schaefer’s and his “do it now” approach to governance. Identifying an issue and making it a point to address it immediately was something to be admired. As Maryland’s governor and Baltimore’s mayor, he brought real-time results, not empty promises.

The Key Bridge replacement will certainly be a more grandiose structure, simply to accommodate the larger ships of today. We should take this opportunity to not only rebuild this bridge, which is the world’s gateway into Baltimore, but rebrand it with a name just as grand as the bridge itself.

The Baltimore that we all know and love today would not exist without Schaefer. There would be no Inner Harbor, and by extension, no Harbor East or Harbor Point.

Oriole Park at Camden Yards, considered one of America’s best ballparks, would have never come into fruition. That also goes for our light rail line. Through Schaefer’s steadfast commitment, he ensured both would be completed on time. Our beloved two-time world champions, the Baltimore Ravens, would have never existed, along with the highly regarded stadium that came with the team, had Schaefer not brokered the deal.

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The theme for the Key Bridge reconstruction has been “Maryland Tough, Baltimore Strong.” Who embodies that mentality more than Schaefer? This man gave his entire heart to Baltimore, his whole life to Maryland. His name and legacy deserve to be etched into our minds for generations to come.

I urge Gov. Wes Moore and Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedefeld to consider this recommendation. I cannot think of a more fitting way to truly honor Schaefer’s legacy than to rename the replacement Key Bridge for a fellow Baltimorean and Marylander of whom we all can be proud.

Once completed, this new bridge would make the beltway complete again. Symbolically, it will be as if Schaefer is wrapping his arms around Baltimore once again, forever more.

Gregory Spencer Jr., Baltimore