Watch CBS News

Times Square With Baltimore Flavor: New Digital Billboards Could Soon Light Up Downtown

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Think Vegas, Times Square vibes, and infuse that with some Baltimore flavor--the perfect mix of the lights, energy and experience that's just right for Charm City.

City leaders say this project has the potential to transform Baltimore.

"This is a major attraction and a game-changer for our city," said Shelonda Stokes, president of the Downtown Partnership.

"Bring some lights to the city. Like, we need it," said Baltimore resident Eric Fitzgerald Jr. "Look, we need it."

"I close my eyes and I just imagine when I wake up, what you see behind me is all digital," said Stokes.

It's the latest revitalization effort led by the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore and City Councilman Eric Costello.

"Were really excited about bringing motion, art and light into downtown in a vibrant way," said Stokes.

They're proposing a new district called "No-Ha" that would allow large digital signage on buildings to illuminate the city from Camden Yards to the Baltimore Convention Center to President Street.

"We're talking about a vibrant signs," said Stokes. "We're talking about ones that do have some amount of advertising, but they're also infused with art."

The hope is to bring a fresh new look and experience downtown..

"Bring New York, Vegas--what? Lets see that, I would love to see that," said Fitzgerald. "Wow. Like, Ohhh, it's the lights."

"Since this pandemic, things have changed a lot, a lot of the businesses down here has closed, a lot of the restaurants have closed," said Gary Monroe, who works downtown. "So we need something to bring the city back to life."

Property owners and the arts and entertainment districts would also collect revenue from these billboards.

"We also wanted to make sure that the broader Baltimore community could benefit," said Stokes.

People who live in the area said they see a bright future for digital displays in Charm City.

"I cant wait to see it," said Fitzgerald. "Wow!"

Officials said this project will not require any funding from the city, they'll be partnering up with media companies to help cover the cost.

The proposed "No-Ha" North Harbor district goes before planning commission tomorrow, then it will go before the city council for a final vote later this month.

Leaders said we could see signs up as early as next year.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.