Sudbrook Park Historic District

MD_Baltimore_SudbrookPark_courtesyDanReed-Flickr_2013_001_Sig.jpg
Pikesville, MD
United States
Sudbrook Park Historic District

In 1889 Frederick Law Olmsted, Sr., presented plans to developers for a summer resort-community west of the Baltimore city limits. Sudbrook Park was built on 204 acres of James Howard McHenry’s estate. The smallest of three residential communities designed by the senior Olmsted, it prefigured an evolution in the popular form of the American suburb. The neighborhood is characterized by curvilinear streets carefully laid out on rolling topography to produce a pastoral setting. Deed restrictions required each single-family home be placed on a lot of at least one acre, with houses set back 40 feet or more from the street and ten or more feet from neighboring property lines. This reinforced the open, rural atmosphere of the neighborhood. Triangular green spaces located at several intersections were also included in the original plan and served as informal community gathering places. In keeping with the character of a resort-community, the original development included a hotel, swimming pool, stables, and a nine-hole golf course; however, these amenities were eventually replaced by additional homes. The Western Maryland Railway depot at the community’s eastern edge afforded easy commuter access to the city, and Sudbrook Park soon became a prominent and desirable working-class neighborhood. Home to more than 2,000 residents, present-day Sudbrook Park is surrounded by additional residential enclaves, but much of Olmsted, Sr.’s, original design intent for the community remains intact. Sudbrook Park was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.