Note from the Special Secretary of Smart Growth, Wendi Peters

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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. More

The Maryland Planning Commissioners Association Conference is Coming to Gaithersburg this Fall

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Resources and Tools

Being a Planning Commissioner or a member of a Board of Zoning Appeals is a tough job. Individuals dedicated to their communities, with full time jobs, are thrust into positions where they can make important and difficult decisions guiding the future of growth, economic development, land preservation, and transportation in Maryland. Where is one to go to seek training and guidance on this critical issue? A great place to start is the Planning Commissioner Training Course,  created following the Smart and Sustainable Growth Act of 2009. The course, available both online and in person at the Maryland Municipal League (MML), Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), and Maryland Planning Commissioners Association (MPCA) conferences (as well as on demand for interested jurisdictions), contains modules on Planning 101, Comprehensive Planning, and Smart Growth in Maryland.  It is an excellent first step, but what about the citizen planner who wants to take the next step? This is where the MPCA offers help. More

120 W. North Avenue

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The Motor House

The building at 120 W. North Avenue in Baltimore City began as the Eastwick Motor Company, Ford sales and service, in 1914 and later evolved into Lombard Office Furniture. More

Re-Blog: Designation of The Olmsted Conference Room by Ed Orser

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By Ed Orser, Friends of Maryland’s Olmsted Parks & Landscapes

Maryland’s State Department of Planning has designated the meeting space in its Baltimore office headquarters as “The Olmsted Conference Room” in recognition of the major role of the Olmsted firm in planning initiatives for parks, residential communities, and other sites in Baltimore and elsewhere in the state. A large introductory panel on the “Olmsted Legacy” identifies the three Olmsteds who for more than 75 years played an important role in Maryland and in nearby D.C.: Frederick Law Olmsted (FLO), John Olmsted, and Frederick Law Olmsted, Junior (FLO Junior).


Planning staff, Steve Allan and John Coleman review the panel for the 1908 plan.

Panels on the extensive Baltimore projects make the case that in few American cities was the Olmsted planning impact greater—with comprehensive planning for parks, residential communities, and urban amenities. The parks panel highlights FLO’s 1876 design for the grounds of Baltimore’s Mount Vernon Place (supplanted by Beaux Arts-inspired features). But the later role of the Olmsted Brothers, especially FLO Junior, in park planning proved more extensive and of longer duration. The firm’s 1904 comprehensive plan for Baltimore’s parks laid the basis for the modern park system. In 2016 the Friends of Maryland’s Olmsted Parks & Landscapes and others succeeded in gaining the City’s historic designation for an East-West corridor of “Olmsted Parkways,” first envisioned in the 1904 plan. More

Maryland State Data Center Releases 2017 Census Population Estimates: Central Jurisdictions Continue to Lead Maryland’s Population Growth

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Resources and Tools

The 2017 numbers show that Maryland’s population grew by 27,475 people between July 1, 2016 and July 1, 2017, with the majority of the increase in the Central Maryland jurisdictions of Montgomery, Anne Arundel, Howard, and Frederick counties, More

Meet the Staff: Caroline Rexford

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Caroline Rexford is the new GIS Planner II in the Property Mapping Unit. Her main duty is to maintain and update property maps and underlying GIS data layers, which will result in tax assessment maps and the MDProperty View/FINDER GIS products.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources Seeking Input on Outdoor Recreation

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Statewide Planning and Collaboration

While Planning is listening to Marylanders describe how a state development plan can enhance planning cooperation and implementation, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) wants to hear how Maryland can improve outdoor recreation opportunities through its Land Preservation and Recreation Plan. More

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