The Fells Prospect Community Association has signed a lease with the city to gate two alleys: Griffin Ct. and Portugal St. and Regester St. and Portugal St.
The alleys, just east of S. Broadway, made the news last year for deplorable conditions, garnering attention from this paper and WBAL for needles, condoms, human feces and other unsightly remnants of inappropriate clandestine behavior.
The lease with the city will allow residents to close off the alleys with gates, making them accessible only to residents, utility companies, and city services.
Victor Corbin, president of Fells Prospect, signed the lease on behalf of the organization. He said at this point there is no timeline for getting the gates installed.
“These things take time. The residents still have to raise money to pay for the gates,” he said.
The gates, he estimates, cost upwards of $2,500 each for heavy metal, plus fees. Fees include money for lock boxes, which must be installed on the gates for pedestrian and authorized vehicle access.
Corbin said grant money is available for alley-gating projects, but the process is competitive and the residents may have to raise the money themselves.
Fells Prospect had previously signed a lease with the city permitting alley gate installation at Chester St. and Gough St.
“Years ago, people were going into the Chester-Gough alley and dumping trash, having sex, doing drug deals,” he said.
Now, the residents love the gates. The whole process of getting an alley gated can take years, from idea to installation, he said.
“But in the end, it’s good for the neighborhood,” Corbin said.
by Danielle Sweeney