19th Century B&O Railroad-Themed Toddler Train Opens at Federal Hill Park

| June 5, 2019 | 0 Comments

A 19th Century B&O Railroad-themed toddler playground train opened at Federal Hill Park last month. The train is an addition to the park’s historic-themed playground that honors local history with pieces replicating the Signal Hill Tower, Fort Federal Hill, the B&O Roundhouse Clerestory and Lantern, and the Federalist Ship. The first phase of the playground was completed in 2014.

The project was led by South Harbor Renaissance (SHR), a non-profit started by a group of Federal Hill neighbors in 2011 to spearhead improvements to Federal Hill Park. More than $700,000 in donations and grants have led to a new flag staff plaza, the restoration of the monuments of War of 1812 heroes General Samuel Smith and Colonel George Armistead, improved maintenance in the park, new benches, new trash cans, and a historic-themed playground.

SHR’s “Campaign for the Train” raised $55,000 for foundation work and the newest playground piece that replicates a B&O engine and dining car. The green and gray piece features a slide and areas for toddlers to climb and sit. The train was designed and built by Playground Specialists.

Campaign for the Train received $27,500 from individual donations, a matching gift of $7,500 from the T. Rowe Price Foundation, and $20,000 from the South Baltimore Gateway Partnership (SBGP), which invests a share of video lottery terminal revenues from Horseshoe and other Maryland casinos to improve neighborhoods in South and Southwest Baltimore.

A table and seating area was also installed next to the playground. This was funded by a $4,281 Enhanced Services grant from SBGP.

The SHR Leadership Team has 13 members. Campaign for the Train is led by Co-Chairs Anne Apgar, Sandy Apgar, Tara Kirk Sell, Katie Landry, and Jon Wood.

The new train will be dedicated at 4 pm on Saturday, June 15th, the day after Flag Day, by Senator Barbara Mikulski. SHR welcomes all who love and use Federal Hill Park to attend the dedication, as well as join the Family Picnic Celebration from 3pm to 6 pm.

Photos courtesy of South Harbor Renaissance 

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Founder and Publisher of SouthBmore.com, longtime resident of South Baltimore, and a graduate of Towson University. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, father of three, amateur pizza chef, skateboarder, and "bar food" foodie. Email me at Kevin@InceptMM.com and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.