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Loyola receives over $1.2 million in federal and state funding to create community hub on York Road

Aerial shot of Loyola facility at 5104 York Road in Baltimore
Photo by Jack Cannon, '21

Loyola University Maryland received $1 million in federal funding and $225,000 in state funding to renovate and create a community hub in the University’s multipurpose facility at 5104 York Road in Baltimore. The renovations, scheduled for completion in 2026, will strengthen Loyola’s York Road Initiative, a community development effort in the York Road neighborhoods of Baltimore.

“As a Jesuit, Catholic institution, we are committed to continuing to invest in our campus, including spaces and resources along York Road,” said Terrence M. Sawyer, J.D., president of Loyola. “This renovated space will serve as a hub for community-university partnerships serving the York Road corridor and city of Baltimore. It will bring together diverse groups and provide an operational home for a wide range of community engagement efforts. As we implement our new strategic plan, we are looking for ways we can engage with our community and do the work of investing in our city.”

As part of the renovation, Loyola will add 2,500 square feet of office space at 5104 York Road for professionals for Loyola’s York Road Initiative and the Center for Community, Service, and Justice. The addition will also include a multipurpose space for community events and workshops and a large reception area for small-scale retail and pop-up art events. The space will allow for legal clinics for the community, youth workforce and leadership development programs, and events such as Loyola’s annual Halloween Block Party for the neighborhoods.

The renovations will also create office space for an entrepreneur from Loyola’s Baltipreneurs Accelerator, which supports startup businesses and social ventures through the Simon Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Loyola.

In addition to Loyola’s York Road Initiative, the renovated space will house partnering community organizations, including the York Road Partnership and York Corridor Business Improvement District Management Authority. Loyola’s departments of public safety and environmental health and safety will continue to operate out of the building.

Loyola will repurpose the York Road Initiative’s existing office, a smaller freestanding building on the same property, for the University’s sustainability and food equity efforts, including the Govans Farmers’ Market, a community fridge that supplies food to neighbors in need, a community compost bin for food scraps, and environmental sustainability and climate resiliency programs for the area. Loyola’s Office of Sustainability will lead these efforts.

The $1 million in federal funding comes from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development at the request of Sen. Chris Van Hollen, Sen. Ben Cardin, and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger.

“This direct federal investment will support Loyola’s efforts to bring the York Road Corridor and Greater Govans communities closer together by providing an inclusive space for local events, workforce development programs, and other support services. I have seen Loyola’s York Road Initiative firsthand, and I support this vital work that both uplifts the students they teach and the surrounding communities they serve,” said Senator Van Hollen, a member of the Appropriations Committee.

“Loyola has a long history of expanding opportunities that reach beyond the campus and into the community. The York Road Initiative is just another example of that. With this federal investment, the university can provide a critical community resource that will help drive economic growth and connectivity in the York Road Corridor,” said Senator Cardin. “Team Maryland is committed to supporting this and other community-led projects that improve the health, economy and safety of neighborhoods in Baltimore and throughout the state.”

In addition to adding office space, the funding will allow Loyola to purchase new generators, update mechanical systems, and consolidate the University’s department of public safety in the building.

“Sen. Van Hollen, Sen. Cardin, and Rep. Ruppersberger share our vision of a thriving, prosperous York Road community full of opportunity for all,” Sawyer said. “We’re grateful for their continued support of Loyola and our efforts in the community. Together we rise, and together we can achieve great things for and with our neighbors.”

Loyola’s York Road Initiative also received $675,000 in federal funding in 2022.

The $225,000 state grant, matched by $225,000 from Loyola’s capital budget, will fund preconstruction work for the office renovation at 5104 York Road, including project planning, architectural design, and site preparation. The grant comes from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development’s Seed Community Development Anchor Institution Fund, which provides funding to anchor institutions for community development projects.