Congestion A Consequence Of Baltimore’s Tune-Up For Grand Prix Race | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Congestion A Consequence Of Baltimore’s Tune-Up For Grand Prix Race

Play associated audio
Road work crews have taken two of four lanes away from cars on Baltimore’s Pratt Street, to turn the arterial into a raceway for next year’s Grand Prix.
Cathy Duchamp
Road work crews have taken two of four lanes away from cars on Baltimore’s Pratt Street, to turn the arterial into a raceway for next year’s Grand Prix.

By Cathy Duchamp

One year from now, Baltimore will host the mid-Atlantic’s first Grand Prix auto race. But first, city streets have to be turned into a race track. That means construction that starts in earnest this week.

The Pratt Street Ale House stands close to where the checkered flag will fly.

"It’s loud out here right now and as you can see there’s been a few little accidents as far as the mud splattering onto the tables on the street," says Michael Schultheiss.

Schultheiss waits tables just a couple yards from the construction. He thinks the short term pain will make for long term gain.

"Everyone’s excited about it. I think the estimated revenue it’s going to bring in is something like $100,000,000 for the city," he says.

For the record, race backers say the Grand Prix will generate $70 million. That includes 6 million in direct tax revenue. But the next twelve months of preparation does have costs.

"The bottom line is mostly likely to suffer. Sales tax revenues are going to suffer. Customers are going to suffer," says Lou Boulmetis, owner of Hippodrome Hatters, a hat shop two blocks north of the race course.

The city put up no parking signs in front of his store during construction. Boulmetis says the restrictions are overkill. He’s lobbying the city to lift them.

NPR

As Publishing Industry Courts China, Authors Speak Out Against Censorship

Chinese writers and publishers are being celebrated this week at BookExpo America — the industry's largest trade event in North America. Free speech advocates are supporting silenced Chinese writers.
NPR

Cod Comeback: How The North Sea Fishery Bounced Back From The Brink

A decade ago, fishermen trying to catch North Sea cod were coming up empty. Now, thanks to strict fishing rules put in place to halt the decline, this fish tale looks headed for a happy ending.
NPR

Former House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert Indicted By Federal Grand Jury

The longest-serving Republican speaker was indicted Thursday for illegally structuring cash withdrawals from bank accounts to conceal payments to someone he committed "prior misconduct" against.
NPR

FCC Chairman Wants To Help Low Income Americans Afford Broadband

Tom Wheeler proposes to reboot the Lifeline phone-access program. The plan recognizes that everyone needs to study, apply for jobs and make social connections online.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.