BBJ — Baltimore’s Neighborhood Impact Investment fund makes $7.2M in loans in first year

By Melody Simmons

A total of $7.2 million in loans have been made through Baltimore’s new Neighborhood Impact Investment Fund during its first year, officials said on Thursday.

Some of the projects the fund supported include planning for a massive redevelopment of Perkins Homes as part of a redo of the urban landscape located between Harbor East and Johns Hopkins Hospital, and needed engineering and architectural services for a new community wellness center in East Baltimore.

The first loans from the impact investment fund, called NIIF for short, were outlined at a forum by Mark Kaufman, CEO of the nonprofit NIIF organization, on Thursday in the sanctuary of the Southern Baptist Church. He said the loans were “closer to the first inning than the ninth inning in this game” of community redevelopment, but they symbolized a move toward upgrades in long-ignored neighborhoods around Baltimore.