Westshore Park

Westshore Park

An Outdoor "Living Room" for Baltimore
{"autoplay":"true","autoplay_speed":"3000","speed":"300","arrows":"true","dots":"false","loop":"true","nav_slide_column":5,"rtl":"false"}

DETAILS

LocationBaltimore, Maryland, USA
ClientCity of Baltimore
Size2.5 acres

Complementing the Inner Harbor’s world-famous promenade, Westshore Park has come to be known as the city’s living room on the harbor. The park is strategically located on the innermost shore of the harbor and sandwiched between the new Baltimore Visitor Center and the Maryland Science Center. Having rediscovered its maritime heritage and opened it to the world at the Inner Harbor, the city had failed to provide for the large open space that would define its new center. Beginning with an open space master plan of the entire Inner Harbor area, this strategically located site was selected for Baltimore’s new green civic venue on which to congregate, celebrate and present itself to the world with pride. Where once cars were parked on compacted lawn panels, these 2.5 acres of open lawn, gardens, fountains, and views now constitute the major civic space in the city’s revitalization and livability efforts.

The park is level with adjacent streets to maximize sight lines, resulting in a three-foot elevation above the waterfront promenade, providing a vantage point from which to watch life on the harbor or step into it. Tourists as well as residents are attracted to the exhibits, performances, and celebrations on the large level central lawn that has been designed for maximum flexibility. Weekly yoga can easily shift to a full concert the next evening and then back to an arts festival. Flanking the lawn is a shaded garden, a café area with food kiosks, and a café plaza by the Visitor Center. The main plaza is just a few steps up from the Harbor’s Promenade. Dancing, cooling jets shoot up from the ground in concert with colored lights, music, and a fog machine.

A large sculptural pavilion provides shade and shelter for performances, while the harbor edges provide dramatic overlooks, ramps, and seating steps that encourage activity between the promenade and the park. Shaded perimeter paths with benches and lush planting areas provide garden seating from which to view the main park activities and harbor beyond. Through careful programmatic analysis and attention to those details that bring comfort, West Shore Park has become both tourist grounds and Baltimore’s common ground.

Related Projects

Heritage Field at Macombs Dam Park

The Macombs Dam park ensemble consists of a variety of lush, contemporary green spaces in which the community can relax, socialize, and play.  One segment of the landscape is a 13 acre park on the roof of the stadium parking structure, the largest full-service rooftop park every built by the City; another segment is an at-grade park where the now demolished Ya...

Aitken Place Park

Aitken Place Park will be at the heart of Toronto’s East Bayfront Community – currently being transformed from an underutilized industrial brownfield into a vibrant waterfront neighborhood. Flanked by the residential development to the west and the commercial buildings to the north, the park’s water’s edge location presents a unique opportunity to create...

One Zero Park

Digital City is blessed with many assets that make it a special place in the Samsung family of campuses. Brilliant minds from around the world, an innovative environment, and an open space system in which the quality of work life is enhanced with play and relaxation. One Zero Park will be its center of spiritual gravity in which Samsung can host events and cel...

Dubai Expo 2020

From October 2021 to April 2022, the City of Dubai will host the World Expo: a large-scale International Registered Exhibition that will bring nations together with universal themes and immersive experiences. It will comprise an entire new city, built on a 1,083-acre site between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The Expo site is organized around a central plaza linked to ...

South Waterfront Greenway

The new urban plan for South Waterfront includes a 1-1/2 mile extension of downtown’s waterfront parks and the reclamation of the Willamette River for public recreation. The design team worked closely with the City of Portland, developers, and natural resource advocates to strike a balance between development, recreation and re-naturalization of this neglected...

Chelsea Waterside Park

In 1986, Thomas Balsley Associates was asked by the Chelsea Waterside Park Association to translate this community’s vision for a waterfront park into a design document that would be used to plan the new Route 9-A and the proposed Hudson River Park. Ten years later, when funding for the Chelsea Waterside Park was identified, Thomas Balsley Associates won an in...

Gate City Osaki

“I do sculpture as it relates to my designs, and as the sculpture emerges from the designs it becomes collaborative. This is gratifying because the sculpture is very much in keeping with the overall landscaping concept. It is not an afterthought,” writes Tom Balsley. Here we see the full integration of his sculptural expression in the overall landscape design ...

Nelson Mandela Park Master Plan

Identified by the City as one of its “Big Five” open space projects, the conceptual master plan for Nelson Mandela Park will create a much-needed central open space for the city’s south district, an industrial area along the waterfront that is home to a growing and increasingly diverse population. Here the city seeks to transcend its current park paradigm of l...

2020-01-10T23:02:06+00:00