Who would have thought that historically down-in-the-heels Highlandtown would have become such a gem? Anyone who was paying attention, that’s who. Highlandtown’s blossoming didn’t come out of nowhere. It’s been going on for years, but has happened slowly enough and in such a way that all of its “stakeholders”—old timers, newcomers, and recent immigrants from all over the world—are reaping the benefits of the neighborhood’s growth. Old is co-existing with new, and housing values are going up—but gentrification isn’t kicking anyone out or warping the hood’s character. New businesses are opening up all the time, and there’s a persistent rumor of a Highlandtown/Canton Charm City Circulator route, courtesy of the local city councilman. OK, maybe the southeast Circulator route is magical thinking—but Highlandtown is still eminently walkable, and its multiculturalism, great Latino markets and restaurants, the Creative Alliance, Patterson Park, and affordable housing are not the stuff of pipe dreams.