Stop the Road - Baltimore’s Epic 40-year Battle over Interstate Highways
Stop the Road Baltimore’s Epic 40-year Battle over Interstate Highways

Vacant, boarded houses in Fells Point, 1975

Preliminary Reviews: 

“Paull’s surgical dissection of the 40-year battle produces a book that is essential for understanding today’s Baltimore and the many other American cities which experienced similar highway wars.”

   Antero Pietila, author of Not in My Neighborhood: How Bigotry Shaped a Great American City.

“Stop the Road is an engrossing saga of Baltimore, not just because the events depicted are so significant for our city, but also because the history is enlivened by in person storytelling. You will marvel how this combination of community activists, preservationists, and environmental advocates gained the upper hand over the road building establishment.”

   M.J. (“Jay”) Brodie, former Baltimore Housing Commissioner and President of Baltimore Development Corporation.

The Book

Coming Soon:

“Stop the Road, Baltimore’s epic 40-year battle over Interstate Highways”

by Evans Paull

Introduction to Stop the Road

During a visit to her former neighborhood in 1988, Mercedes Stevens succinctly summed up the aftermath of the Baltimore’s 40-year battle over Interstate Highways.  She said, “If the Expressway had been built, you’d say ‘well, who wants to live there anyway?’” Stevens was talking about her family’s former home on South Decker Street in Canton, but she could have been talking about Montgomery Street in South Baltimore, William Street in Federal Hill, Ellamont Street in Rosemont, Aliceanna Street in Harbor East, or Lancaster Street in Fells Point.

That Baltimore is not saddled with expressways barging their way through historic neighborhoods, waterfront communities, and the Inner Harbor is testament to those operating outside of the power structure, a rare victory of the outsiders and the powerless over the insiders and the powerful.  

This is the story of those outsiders and how they managed, against all odds, to gain the upper hand.  Amongst this ragtag band of neighborhood activists, preservationists, environmentalists, and 1960’s idealists, there is only one household name: Senator Barbara Ann Mikulski.  While the Senator’s good name does deserve to be on the marquee for the Road Wars saga, there were so many others, ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

“If you think about the things that have really changed the face of Baltimore as we know it today, to me there is nothing more important than the road wars.”

   Bill Struever, Baltimore developer and urban strategist

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