Photo by Eli Pousson/Baltimore Heritage, via Flickr.

The Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore will now be a regular presence in Fells Point, with staff working to beautify, market and patrol the neighborhood under an agreement reached with local businesses.

New services to assist Fells Point will include more regular maintenance, beautification projects, uniformed safety patrols and guides, as well as increased marketing support. The nonprofit says it will also prioritize Broadway Square as a “center of activity” and better maintain Thames Street Park, and the neighborhood will have “a dedicated management team and staff specifically servicing the Fells Point district,” according to a release.

The expansion comes roughly half a year after the Baltimore City Council approved a bill extending the city’s so-called Waterfront Management District to include Fells Point, affording it the same perks enjoyed by Harbor East, Harbor Point and the Inner Harbor. Business owners in the Fells Point commercial district agreed in a vote to pay additional fees for the Waterfront Partnership’s services.

Kelley Heuisler, president of Fell’s Point Main Street and owner of S. Broadway women’s boutique Poppy & Stella, described the move as a “game changer” in a statement.

Misty Keens, who took over as executive director of Fell’s Point Main Street just last month, told Baltimore Fishbowl local merchants are excited about the additional services.

“It’s really gonna help shape the image so that the it matches the perception of what the residents and the businesses here feel – that Fells Point is a real gem for the city,” Keens said.

The Waterfront Partnership made an “experimental expansion” into Fells Point in 2013, according to a statement from the nonprofit’s president, Laure Swartz, though a formal partnership with a funding arrangement didn’t materialize until last year.

“We look forward to using our resources to strengthen and support the neighborhood,” Schwartz said.

Ethan McLeod is a freelance reporter in Baltimore. He previously worked as an editor for the Baltimore Business Journal and Baltimore Fishbowl. His work has appeared in Bloomberg CityLab, Next City and...