3504 Woodbrook Avenue Profile

3504 Woodbrook Avenue exterior after renovation. Rowhome in Baltimore, Maryland.
3504 Woodbrook Avenue exterior after renovation.

3504 Woodbrook Avenue

Once a vacant building, then a pile of debris upon collapse, 3504 Woodbrook Avenue now stands as an elegant rowhome filled with high-end features meant to make its future tenant’s lives easier. 

3504 Woodbrook Avenue interior before renovation. Distressed shell townhome in Baltimore, Maryland.
Interior before renovation.

James Moore III, a Baltimore native and licensed contractor for 40 years, knew what he was looking for when purchasing 3504 Woodbrook at a One House At A Time auction. He already had familiarity with the Parkview/Woodbrook neighborhood, which sits directly between Druid Hill Park and Mondawmin Mall. Moore rehabbed 3112 and 3216 Auchentoroly Terrace, just down the street. He says 3504 Woodbrook attracted him because of its front porch and width (2,272 sq. ft.). “It had the right footprint,” says Moore. “It had all the elements that made for a nice design.”

"All we had to do was scoop it up and take it out. So, no demo. It was already done for us."

The project was a full gut rehab that sat next to vacant properties undergoing construction. One of the biggest challenges Moore faced was planning demolition. But he says that while trying to figure out how to approach the property’s roof during demo, the roof collapsed into the first floor on its own. “All we had to do was scoop it up and take it out,” says Moore. “So, no demo. It was already done for us. We didn’t have to worry about getting up on the roof.” Following that happy accident, the crew worked to realize Moore’s design, which he created based on salvaged materials he collected from local reuse centers like Second Chance and Loading Dock. He says his collection of materials (reclaimed wood, lighting fixtures, furniture, etc.) helps him visualize what a property can be.

3504 Woodbrook Avenue interior after renovation. Steel staircase, exposed brick walls, colorful artwork.
Steel and reclaimed wood staircase.

Once you enter the finished home, you instantly notice a grand staircase made of steel and recycled wood from Second Chance. Moore says he uses Feng Shui principles when designing his homes. He made sure the stairs did not face the doorway to avoid letting out good energy. On the other side of the stairway is the first-floor kitchen area, which includes white granite countertops, wine storage, and a refreshment center with an instant hot water tap and a thermos filler. It also has a wireless phone charging station, one of the many you can find throughout the house. Upstairs you’ll see two bedrooms (one with reclaimed barn doors from Loading Dock), a washer and dryer unit, and a bathroom with a soaking tub.

"Everyone deserves a nice place to live."

Refreshment center with thermos filling station, microwave, oven, and gray cabinets.
Kitchen refreshment center.

Designed for group living, the renovation has a second kitchen area on the third floor as well as a second washer and dryer unit. It also has another bedroom and a bathroom with a soaking tub and smart touch light mirror. There are three outdoor decks attached to the back of the property, which can be accessed separately on each floor. The home is fully furnished, including antique wood dressers, desks, armoires, storage cabinets, etc. from Second Chance as well as some colorful artwork by Baltimore artists. Moore says he eventually wants to sell the property, but for now he will rent it until the neighborhood comps adapt to the area’s revitalization. He rents another one of his rehabbed properties to medical nurses and is doing the same with 3504 Woodbrook. He says he targeted the Johns Hopkins network while advertising the property. It was listed for rent at $2,400 per month.

Second kitchen area with white marble counter tops, green walls, and hardwood floors.
Second kitchen area on third floor.

One of Moore’s philosophies is to avoid cutting corners. He says he would rather practice patience than slack in quality and potentially ruin the project. His style is to build for the eventual resident’s convenience instead of his convenience. Part of Moore’s goal is to create luxury housing for predominantly Black neighborhoods. “Everyone deserves a nice place to live,” he says. “[Parkview/Woodbrook] is a majority Black community and that’s my focus. For some reason people think that Black people don’t deserve anything nice. They think they can just put anything in the house, and everybody will be okay with it. I don’t understand it. Every house I’ve done has been a top-of-the-line house for majority African American communities.” 

Moore says he enjoys this work, that it is fun for him. So, his next step is to restock his collection of materials for a later project. But until then, Moore is basking in his pride of 3504 Woodbrook. He says the local community is happy about the renovation as well. “I always get a lot of compliments,” says Moore. Considering the neighboring developments, like the fellow receivership property at 3502 Woodbrook Avenue, he is optimistic about the neighborhood’s future. “It’ll be a nice block. More developments, more people coming in and fixing up houses, and people moving in and taking advantage of the nice park. It’s a nice neighborhood.”



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