Update: Maryland’s Phase III WIP – What’s Next?

Planning in Progress

by Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Local Assistance and Training Planner 

In the May 1, 2019 edition of this newsletter, we shared the news that the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) had recently posted the draft Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP) to their website along with a schedule of public participation and comment. WIP III implementation, however, is an ongoing effort. Here’s what’s happening now: Continue reading

Meet the Planning Staff: Val Lazdins

The more complete story!

Valdis (Val) Lazdins, joined Planning as Assistant Secretary of Planning Services shortly before going to press with our November issue of Planning Practice Monthly. Thus we gave him a quick introduction but promised to share his history more fully in a future edition:

Val was born and raised in the Michigan resort town of Grand Haven, on the Lake Michigan shoreline, where he spent summers on the beach and surfed as a teen. He graduated from Michigan State with a degree in landscape architecture and went on to the Ohio State University where he received his Master’s in City and Regional Planning. His first job took him to Denver where he worked primarily on large scale land development projects, new town planning for energy workers during Colorado’s first oil shale boom, and ski resort design – a real treat for a ski buff.  Continue reading

2020 Decennial Census: It’s Important, Easy and Safe

Planning in Progress

Article I, Section 2 of the United States Constitution states that “Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States … according to their respective Numbers … The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years.” With those words, the American system of government established the Census, a decennial (every ten years) counting and description of our population. The 1790 Census, our first, established a national population of 3,929,214. The most recent, in 2010, upped that figure to 308,700,000; a close to eight fold increase! To ensure we are planning for Maryland’s communities today and of tomorrow, everyone must get a full and accurate count in the 2020 census.   Continue reading

Note from the Special Secretary of Smart Growth, Wendi Peters

Planning Assistance in Action

One year ago, at the Maryland Association of Counties summer conference, Governor Hogan signed an Executive Order directing the Department of Planning to work together with local governments, state agencies, Maryland residents and other stakeholders on a 21st century plan moving Maryland forward – growing responsibly and protecting our resources. Continue reading

Liberty Grace Church of God, Baltimore City – Community Outreach and a Historic Bowling Alley (Guest Blog)

A new article from the Maryland Historical Trust: “Liberty Grace Church of God, Baltimore City – Community Outreach and a Historic Bowling Alley (Guest Blog)”

Our History, Our Heritage

By Dr. Terris King, Senior Pastor, Liberty Grace Church of God

The things that bring people together are often surprising. And so it was with a bowling alley tucked into the basement of a West Baltimore church. As the current Senior Pastor of Liberty Grace Church of God, Baltimore, Maryland, I was inspired to renovate the church’s abandoned bowling alley after reading Antero Pietila’s first book, “Not in My Neighborhood: How Bigotry Shaped a Great American City,” which highlights the struggle of Jewish and African American immigrants as they settled throughout Baltimore. According to Pietila, a cozy little West Baltimore neighborhood called Ashburton became the first neighborhood in Baltimore and in the nation to openly embrace integration with African Americans, Jews and whites living together. But when a church was sold to a predominately African American congregation, and that congregation closed the basement bowling alley that served as a gathering…

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Memory Mapping in the Bottom and Hammond Town

Our History, Our Heritage

By Jen Sparenberg, Hazard Mitigation Program Officer

Easton’s Bottom and Hammond Town neighborhoods served vibrant African American communities in the decades after the Civil War.  Located adjacent to “the Hill,” an early free African-American settlement, both neighborhoods have suffered a slow decline over decades. As Easton considers the redevelopment of nearby Easton Point, the Port Street Master Plan presents an opportunity to revitalize the Bottom and to record and interpret the history of the Bottom and Hammond Town.

Old Moton SchoolOld Moton, a Rosenwald School in Easton. Credit: Michelle Zachs

As a first step towards documenting the history of both communities, the Chesapeake Multicultural Resource Center and Port Street Matters/the NAACP-Talbot County sponsored a community outreach meeting to record existing and vanished important places in the communities. Residents, ex-residents, and community elders met at the American Legion Blake-Blackston Post #77 in Easton to participate.

Large aerial maps of the Bottom, Hammond Town…

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Maryland’s Old Senate Chamber Reopens Its Doors!

Our History, Our Heritage

By Marcia Miller, Chief, Office of Research, Survey and Registration

The Chamber is open! The Old Senate Chamber in the Maryland State House has opened its doors to visitors once again after completing a multi-year, state-of-the-art restoration. The extensive project returned the room as accurately as possible to its 18th-century appearance. Exhaustive physical investigation and meticulous research, combined with fieldwork throughout the City of Annapolis, ensured the authenticity of the richly-ornamented architectural detailing and the furnishings as they would have appeared on December 23, 1783.

The Old Senate Chamber as it would have appeared on December 23, 1783 during the resignation ceremony of General George Washington. The gallery has been recreated based on historic photographs, physical evidence, and documentary records.The Old Senate Chamber as it would have appeared on December 23, 1783 during the resignation ceremony of General George Washington. The gallery has been recreated based on historic photographs, physical evidence, and documentary records.

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