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Baltimore Finds A Way To Make Walking Downtown Fun

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Every day downtown, tens of thousands of people cross the street with barely a glance downward.

Now, as Mike Schuh reports, the city has found a way to put a little fun into walking around downtown.

The hopscotch guy is artist Graham Coreil-Allen. He put bird tracks in a hopscotch grid in downtown Baltimore.

"They represent the Ravens and the Orioles," he said.

But there's more.

"We've got boot tracks that represent all the workers that power downtown Baltimore, as well as the history of labor," he said.

These crosswalks are the only ones of their kind in the nation.

One of them is at the base of the city arts promotion office. These are their big idea. Artist Paul Bertholet won a commission.

"This is the zip walk crosswalk," Bertholet said.

Instead of solid lines, he broke them up, staggered them and added a pull tab.

These playful crosswalks define one of the city's three art districts.

"When they see cool things like this, there are always more things to look forward to," said Mitch Case, The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.

Baltimore's reputation for quirkiness will continue. The hopscotch grid represents artists. Fortunately, you don't have to play barefoot.

The project cost $200,000 and the artists got a $1,500 fee. The city says the international exposure the city has received is worth more than what the project cost.

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