Baltimore's tourism bureau is expanding its free app for tourists and convention planners to new platforms and neighborhoods.
The 3-D app of the city, known as BaltimoreInSite, will be available free for Android devices and downloadable from Visit Baltimore
's website by mid-2013. The app is currently available on the iPhone. Since it was launched last year, 60 people have downloaded the app.
The app's map will cover about half the city by this summer and the rest by next year, says Brian Russell, integrated practice manager at Ayers Saint Gross Inc. The Baltimore architectural firm developed the app, which currently covers about one-fourth of the city.
“We are applying video game technology to telling about the city in a unique way,” Russell says.
Baltimore InSite now covers the Inner Harbor to Amtrak’s Penn Station, including Canton, Fort McHenry and Locust Point. Future coverage will extend to Station North Arts & Entertainment District and the Charles Street corridor along with major institutions and attractions like Johns Hopkins University, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore Zoo and M&T Bank Stadium. The app links to hotels, restaurants, retail and attractions that are Visit Baltimore members.
Visit Baltimore CEO Tom Noonan says the app has several uses. Convention and hotel sales teams use it to show potential convention customers the layout of the city and its attractions. It is a media planning guide to find restaurants, caterers and venues. Tourists use the app to find attractions and walking tours.
Noonan says the app is an ongoing project. The web version will link to other websites, and new buildings and attractions like Horseshoe Casino will be added as they open.
The app cost about $40,000 to develop, paid by Visit Baltimore and Ayers Saint Gross, which also contributed pro bono work to the project.
Sources: Brian Russell, Ayers Saint Gross; Tom Noonan, Visit Baltimore
Writer: Barbara Pash