A Natural Partnership: The Maryland Department of Planning and the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)

Planning Assistance in Action

Did you know that the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) plays an important role in supporting the economies, environment, and vitality of the Appalachian Region? In addition to their departmental duties, Planning staff in the department’s Western Maryland office have also functioned as the Maryland State Program Managers of the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) for decades. In late 2019, David Cotton, Planning’s Director of the Western Maryland Regional Office, located in the city of Cumberland, was appointed as Maryland’s newest ARC  Program Manager (see the Meet the Planning Staff article, also in this edition of Planning Practice Monthly).

Screenshot of Appalachian Subregions Map taken from ARC website.

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Low Response Dashboard – Predicted Areas of Low Response, Census 2020

Resources and Tools

by Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Development and Infrastructure Planner
with Alfred P. Sundara, AICP, Manager, Projections and State Data Center

The Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) serves as the liaison to the United States Census Bureau for the upcoming Maryland Census 2020. Planning’s goal is to make sure every person in Maryland is counted. This is the most important count for our future. All of the Planning offices throughout the state are involved in helping to get everyone counted and we are most grateful for their efforts. Continue reading

Collaborative, Multi-Agency Transit-Oriented Development Web Page Launched in January

Resources & Tools

by Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Development and Infrastructure Planner
with Scott Hansen, Transportation Planner

Understanding that Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) is a multidisciplinary, deliberative approach to incorporating principles of smart growth into new and/or redevelopment projects, it only makes sense to bring together key state agencies to create a single go-to TOD site. A new webpage has been created via a partnership among four Maryland agencies: the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning), the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), and the Maryland department of Commerce (Commerce). These agencies have collaborated to provide links to many of their individual and collective geospatial resources and tools in one location (see image of home screen below). 

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Governor Announces $7.6 Million in Funding for Maryland Bikeways; Grant Workshops to be Held in February, March

Planning in Progress

by Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Development and Infrastructure Planner
and Nate Evans, Multimodal Transportation Planner, MDOT

Governor Larry Hogan recently announced that $7.6 million ($3.8 million per year for each of the next two years) will be available for the Bikeways Program, a state initiative that provides funding for bikeways across Maryland. Administered by the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), the program has funded 110 completed projects since its launch in 2011. 

The Bikeways Program provides funding to Maryland jurisdictions and other organizations for projects which support the goals of the Maryland Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan, including improving connections to transit, work, schools, shopping, and other destinations; supporting economic development and environmental stewardship; and enhancing Marylanders’ quality of life in communities across the state. MDOT has developed an interactive map showing the location of 2020 program awards as well as past years’ projects viewable by year or by project type (see image below). Continue reading

Maryland Planning Commissioners Association Regional Workshop in Salisbury on Feb 21

MPCA Corner

In the December edition of Planning Practice Monthly, we asked readers to save the date for a Maryland Planning Commissioners Association (MPCA) regional workshop in Salisbury on February 21. You’ll be glad you did, because the event is shaping up to be an excellent opportunity for regional collaboration, citizen planner education, and networking! The MPCA is partnering with the City of Salisbury and the Institute for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement at Salisbury University (PACE) for a full day (10 a.m. – 3 p.m.) of engaging and informative sessions.  Continue reading

Meet the Planning Staff: David Cotton

Meet the Planning Staff

David Cotton may not be new to Planning, but we are pleased to feature him in this month’s Planning Practice newsletter as a means to celebrate his many accomplishments. Having served as regional planner for the past 20 years, Dave became Director of the Western Maryland regional office in October. Most recently, Dave stepped into an exciting new role as State Program Manager for the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). Established by an act of Congress in 1965, ARC is a regional economic development agency that represents a partnership of federal, state, and local government (See the related article on the ARC). Continue reading

Celebrating a New Sanctuary

MHT in the News

By Susan Langley, State Underwater Archeologist
Maryland Historical Trust

On the frosty morning of November 9, Governor Larry Hogan, Maryland Department of Planning Secretary Robert McCord, Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Secretary Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio, Charles County Commission President Reuben Collins II, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Under Secretary of Commerce Dr. Neil Jacobs, and NOAA Rear-Admiral Tim Gallaudet were joined by about 400 representatives of organizations and agencies, as well as individuals and community supporters, to formally recognize the establishment of the Mallows Bay – Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary. The sanctuary, officially established September 3, 2019, is the first in almost 20 years, the first in Maryland, and the first in a riverine environment. Continue reading