When downtown stadiums were being built, and Baltimore was deciding what to do with Memorial Stadium property, I remember attending presentations by three groups — each with very different visions and plans for the future use of this space. One was for an industrial park that would be gated and without open green space, another was for a shopping center, and a third was to provide affordable senior housing, open green space and a YMCA.

I am glad we had choices available then and grateful we selected the one now known as Stadium Place. Why weren’t we offered choices to consider for our Harborplace?

I find it disturbing a single developer was given the chance to promote his plan there. I am angered this plan is based on the premise that we have to exceed height limits, squeeze public park space, build high-rent housing to make it profitable and shrink traffic lanes to make it work. And then the public has to find the funds for the public open space left over after four huge buildings crowd our Harborplace.

Will our city’s leaders continue to take for granted that this is the best that can be done, even when so many talented, thoughtful people have spoken out about other ways we could design, develop and finance a Harborplace that more of us could get behind?

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I urge the city to reset the consideration of what to do with our Harborplace by giving competitive groups the opportunity to present visions and plans that we can consider and review — including for financial viability. All that glitters really is not gold. I, for one, don’t want to be saying “I told you so” about a plan that took our voice out of Harborplace redevelopment.

Joe Stewart, Baltimore

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