Charles Street (Baltimore) - Route Description - South Baltimore To North Avenue

South Baltimore To North Avenue

Charles Street begins at a dead end one block south of Wells Street in the South Baltimore neighborhood of Baltimore. The terminus is immediately to the north of CSX's Locust Point Branch of the Baltimore Terminal Subdivision and I-95 and two blocks to the west of the historic National Enameling and Stamping Company factory complex. Charles Street heads north as a two-lane street through residential South Baltimore. The street becomes commercial as it passes between the Federal Hill and Sharp Leadenhall neighborhoods. Federal Hill contains the Holy Cross Roman Catholic Church on West Street and the Cross Street Market on the eponymous street. Sharp Leadenhall contains the Little Montgomery Street Historic District. At the north end of the two neighborhoods, Charles Street intersects MD 2, which follows Montgomery Street east and Hughes Street west on its two-block transfer from Hanover Street, which the route follows south toward the Hanover Street Bridge over the Patapsco River, to Light Street at the southwest corner of the Inner Harbor. Charles Street enters the Otterbein neighborhood, where it becomes one-way northbound at Lee Street. At the northern end of the neighborhood, Charles Street intersects Conway Street, a four-block boulevard that passes the Otterbein Church and connects Light Street at the Inner Harbor with I-395 and Howard Street just east of the B&O Warehouse and Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

Charles Street continues north as a three-lane street through the Inner Harbor neighborhood on the south side of downtown Baltimore. The street passes to the east of the Baltimore Convention Center and intersects the two main streets of the Inner Harbor area, eastbound Pratt Street and westbound Lombard Street, between which is the Transamerica Tower (formerly the Legg Mason Building). Charles Street passes to the west of the M&T Bank Building and Bank of America Building before reaching the center of the city's address system at Baltimore Street. The street passes to the east of Charles Center and the Charles Center station of the Baltimore Metro Subway. Charles Street continues north into the Cathedral Hill Historic District, where the street passes St. Paul's Episcopal Church at Saratoga Street, the Woman's Industrial Exchange and Brown's Arcade at Pleasant Street, the Baltimore Basilica at Mulberry Street, and the Benson Building and First Unitarian Church at Franklin Street. Mulberry and Franklin streets carry US 40 eastbound and westbound, respectively.

Charles Street enters the Mount Vernon neighborhood at Centre Street, which contains the Walters Art Museum and Contemporary Museum Baltimore to the west. The street splits into a pair of two-lane roadways at it passes adjacent to the cross-shaped Mount Vernon Square Park. South of the east–west portion of the park, Charles Street passes the Lafayette Monument within the park and the Peabody Institute on the east. The street meets the westbound and eastbound halves of Mount Vernon Place, which flank the east–west segment of the part, at a traffic circle that surrounds the Washington Monument. The eastern leg of the park contains the George Peabody Sculpture. The bifurcated Charles Street continues past the Roger B. Taney Sculpture in the northern leg of the park, Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church and Asbury House to the east, and The Stafford Apartments to the west. The two halves of Charles Street converge as a three-lane street at Madison Street.

Charles Street continues through Midtown, which contains the Belvedere Hotel and several historic rowhouses on adjacent Chase Street. The street passes along the east side of the University of Baltimore and University of Baltimore School of Law before meeting I-83 (Jones Falls Expressway) at the northern end of the neighborhood. The partial interchange with I-83 features ramps from southbound I-83 to Maryland Avenue one block to the west and to Charles Street itself, and an entrance ramp from Charles Street to northbound I-83. Immediately to the east of the I-83 overpass is Pennsylvania Station, the main train station of Baltimore that has intercity service on Amtrak, commuter service on MARC's Penn Line, and light rail service on the Penn Station spur of the Baltimore Light Rail. Charles Street crosses over several tracks of the Amtrak Northeast Corridor and enters the Charles North neighborhood. Between Lanvale and Lafayette streets, which form the east and west components of MD 25 (which becomes Falls Road), the street passes the Charles Theatre and the Baltimore City Passenger Railway Power House and Car Barn. Charles Street continues one more block as an unnumbered highway before reaching the southern terminus of MD 139 at North Avenue, which carries US 1 and US 40 Truck.

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