Canton- a Rapidly Gentrified Neighborhood and one of Baltimore’s most Popular

Canton’s development goes back to the early 19th century as mostly Welsh immigrants, followed by the Irish in the 1840s began settling in Baltimore in large numbers. Subsequent groups of immigrants included Germans, Poles and Ukrainians. Most houses in Canton are turn-of-the-20th-century rowhouses bit many  homes closer to the waterfront date from before the Civil War. With the de-industrialization of the neighborhood in the 1990s the neighborhood’s waterfront was redeveloped into new housing and marinas and the revitalization process worked its way gradually northward. Some metrics hold that between 2000 and 2016 Canton was the 16th most gentrified American neighborhood and now is considered  one of Baltimore’s trendiest and vibrant neighborhoods.

Brewer’s Hill development came later. First with the development of breweries in the 1880s, the most famous being the National Bohemian brand, known affectionately by locals as Natty Bo with the massive Mr. Boh sign hanging high above the old brewery. Most of the district’s rowhouses were built in the 1910s. Brewer’s Hill  also has seen significant revitalization since 2000.

I like both Canton and Brewer’s Hill but the neighborhood seems a bit over hyped by the locals. Yes there is good walkability here with quality public transit & bike access, great parks, decent schools, lots of brand name retail options, and tons of food and beverage businesses, but the neighborhood has some major holes, which elevate other Baltimore districts to a higher urban status in my mind. Canton/Brewer’s Hill lack locally run boutiques and creative stores, is very white and high income, often lacks good tree canopy and modern ADA curbs and is missing some major cultural amenities (i.e. art galleries, museums, and theaters). With more of these missing amenities I would feel more comfortable listing Canton/Brewer’s Hill as one of Baltimore’s top urban districts.

Click here to view my Canton and Brewer’s Hill Neighborhood on my Flickr Page


*Solid urban density.
* Great access to Dwtn via all modes of transit.
* Good bike infrastructure with a decent # of dockless scooters and bikes.
* Pretty good generational and age diversity with a fair number of families with kids.
* Decent schools here with a well rated elementary school, a couple Catholic grade schools and two Catholic high schools.
* For sale housing leans higher end but good variety of times and prices. 1-beds are a mix of condos and rowhouses and sell anywhere btwn 150K-325K, 2-beds sell btwn 175K-600K, 3 & 4 beds sell btwn 225K-850K but a handful of more expensive homes.
* Good # of apartments especially in the large MF bldgs of Brewers Hill. Def on the pricey side but some moderately priced. 1 beds lease anywhere in the 1Ks, 2-beds 1.5K- the high 2Ks, 3-beds btwn 2K and the high 3Ks.
* Solid parks with the expansive Patterson Park sitting on the north park, several good waterfront parks, and a couple parkette’s spread throughout Canton.
* Solid cultural amenities includes lots of food & beverages biz, plenty of live music venues, and a couple bars host live music,
* Solid retail amenities including several supermarkets & drug stores, a target, several brand named stores clothing stores @Shops at Canton Crossing, hardware store, plenty of banks,  a couple of florists, public library, a game store, several dessert stores & gyms, and many churches.
* Attractive Historic rowhouses throughout, a bit more ornate in Canton than Brewer’s Hill. Urban Infill projects a generally good but some auto centric strip malls like Shops at Canton Crossing and a couple others.
* Streetscape is good but not spectacular and the commercial districts haven’t been redone in awhile.
* Very popular neighborhood in Baltimore.


* Consistent sidewalks but modern ADA curb cuts only make apt 1/3 of intersections.
* This is a high income largely white neighborhood so diversity is not Canton’s strong suite.
* So so tree cover. Better in Canton than Brewer’s Hill.
* Really no art galleries, museums, or theaters in the neighborhood.
* Few locally owned boutiques or gift shops. Also no book stores and no post offices but there are a couple nearby.
* A couple strip mall developments break up the generally good urban massing in the neighborhood.

Brewer’s Hill & Halyard Park- Two Revitalizing Urban Districts in Milwaukee’s Northside

The name Brewers’ Hill is derived from the large number of brewery workers and owners who once inhabited the area. Just to the south of the neighborhood, the Schlitz and Blatz breweries operated into the 1980s. Historically Brewer’s Hill was developed as very mixed neighborhood where a laborer’s cottage could stand across the street from a manager’s  mini mansion. This created a plethora of interesting turn of the century architectural styles including a mix of Greek Revival, Italianate, Queen Anne, and Colonial Revival. The district also has a fair share of warehouses near the Schlitz Brewery and Milwaukee River. These have been converted into office and condos as the neighborhood has revitalized.

MLK Drive is the dividing line between Halyard Park and Brewer’s Hill. Sadly this stood as a racial divide for much of the neighborhood’s history but this is becoming less and less the case as both neighborhoods revitalize. Halyard Park is historically a African American district that fell on hard times after the 60s and the construction of I-43. In response to widespread disinvestment and vacancy the neighborhood redeveloped much of its fabric with large suburban homes in the 1980s.  This was done by a resident and Black developer named Eechie Brooks and brought much needed Black homeownership to Halyard Park. Halyard Park was nicknamed the “Suburb within the City”.  Sadly this also had the downside of destroying more of the district’s quality urban fabric and density.

From an urban perspective the neighborhoods have quality access to bike and transit infrastructure, convenience to Dwtn, good for-sale housing diversity, decent retail and cultural amenities, and some great historic housing. To become a great urban district Halyard Park & Brewer’s Hill need more density, more 1-bedroom rentals, better park amenities, more urban in-fill on blighted land, and better urban massing along North Ave.

Click here to view my Brewer’s Hill Album and Click here to view my Halyard Park Album on Flickr


* ADA and sidewalk infrastructure is generally good but a fair amount of residential streets with outdated curb cuts.
* Solid public transit and bike infrastructure access.
* Excellent access to Downtown.
* Great economic and racial diversity here. Decent age diversity but limited # of households with kids.
* Pretty good walkable school access but mixed ratings.
* Pretty good for sale diversity. Decent # of 1-bed condos selling btwn 185K-350K, 2-beds sell btwn 185K-550K, 3 & 4 beds sell between 185K-575K.
* Decent but not great cultural amenities including a good # of food & beverage bizs, a community theater, the American Black Holocaust Museum, a couple breweries.
* Decent but not great retail amenities including a supermarket, several boutiques/clothing stores, a hardware store, plenty of salons/barber shops, good # of churches.
* Some very attractive historic architecture along MLK Drive and good # of attractive homes throughout Brewer’s Hill.


* Okay # of rentals. Limited # of studios and 1-beds. Some 2-beds leasing 1K-2K. Good amount of 3-beds leasing btwn 1K-3K although most in the $1,000s.
* So so park amenities. Expensive recreational parks west of Halyard Park but little else with parks inside these neighborhoods. The expansive Kilbourne Reservoir Park is also only a couple blocks east of Brewer’s Hill.
* Still some safety issues especially in Halyard but this seems to be improving. Still a decent amount blight and vacancy especially in Halyard thanks to severe racial disparities.
* Very mixed bag with urban in-fill. Some quality Multi-family bldgs close to the Milwaukee River. Lots of large suburban housing built in Halyard Park in the 70s-90s.
* Urban massing is a mixed bag. Generally pretty good along MLK Dr. but lots missing death and auto centric blight along North Ave.  Many residential streets in Halyard park are filled with large suburban homes as well. Streetscaping is fine but nothing special about it.
* Still struggling with some image issues, especially Halyard Park but this should lessen in the upcoming years.