Baltimore City Department of Planning e-News - March 2019

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Baltimore City Department of Planning eNewsletter  -  March 2019

A Message from Chris Ryer, Director

Chris Ryer

On February 26, 2019, our colleagues at the Department of Housing and Community Development issued a new framework for community development. This document outlines the strategies DHCD will be employing across the City of Baltimore in years to come. 

The Framework includes four areas for Impact Investment” across the City as well as a new “middle neighborhoods” strategy.  In these areas, Planning will work closely with DHCD and community partners to develop a vision for stability and revitalization.

Within the Planning Department, we are reorienting ourselves to center community development as a core component of our work.  Our team will be focused on how we can improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods, strengthen our city, and support our sister agencies.  I look forward to serving you as your Planning Director, and the Pugh administration and their new community development strategy.

Yours Truly,

Chris Ryer, Director

Census 2020 Campaign Launch on April 1

Census 2020

Join Mayor Pugh and our Complete Count Committee on April 1 at 12:00 in the Rotunda at Baltimore City Hall to kick off Baltimore’s Census 2020 campaign!

Hear from the Mayor and members of our Complete Count Committee on the importance of completing the Census, and its impact on funding.

City staff will be on site to answer any questions about the Census, upcoming job opportunities, and how you can join Baltimore’s Complete Count Committee.

Finally, save-the-date for April 25, when we will host an Open House to discuss, seek feedback and review the Census 2020 Action Plan.

Stay informed about the latest local Census 2020 news, data and events by signing up via this link.

DHCD Grants

Operating Grants Awarded Under Community Catalyst Program

On March 7, Mayor Pugh and DHCD's Commissioner Michael Braverman announced the grants awarded for operating funds under the Community Catalyst Grants Program (CCG).  CCG is a competitive awards program which launched in July of 2018 and supports locally-driven community development work.

A total of $1.75 million in CCG operating funds were disbursed to 35 organizations for community-based projects.   

The organizations receiving funding can be reviewed via this link.

Sustainability Open House Scheduled for April 17.

OH Sustainability

On March 18th, City Council approved the 2019 Sustainability Plan which can be viewed via this link.

Next, join us at our annual Sustainability Open House on April 17 @ 6 PM at the War Memorial.

We've got free food, free trees, free parking, sustainability giveaways, copies of our new 2019 Sustainability Plan, meet + greets with dozens of sustainability groups implementing innovative projects around the city, and more.

Check out the Open House event on Facebook.


Flood Mitigation Guidelines Released for Historic Districts.

Fells Point

The Department of Planning is excited to share two new resources to assist property owners vulnerable to flooding.

Thanks to a grant from the Maryland Historical Trust, the Historical and Architectural Preservation division (CHAP) and the Office of Sustainability have developed the Fells Point Flood Mitigation Guidelines. These guidelines offer information to property owners and tenants about effective strategies to make their historic building more resilient to flooding.

The Office of Sustainability was also a member of an interagency team led by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which investigated potential flood risk adaptive measures for Baltimore. This work resulted in the Assessment of Flood Risk Adaptive Measures, Baltimore City, Maryland.

Both of these resources can be accessed here via the Planning Department's webpage.

FEMA Preliminary Flood Maps Issued, Open House Scheduled for April 2.

On December 26, 2018, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) issued new Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM). The FEMA preliminary maps show 200 structures will be placed within the new regulated 100 year floodplain: this is the highest risk area. You may view the Department of Planning’s webpage for the latest flood insurance maps. 

Open House on April 2

If your business, or residence is in the Special Flood Hazard Area, please attend our FEMA Preliminary Flood Map Open House on April 2, 2019 from 4 PM to 7 PM @ 417 E. Fayette Street, 8th FL. 

Submit comments on the new maps to FEMA:

The 90 day comment period will end on July 16, 2019. You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. FEMA-B-1909, to Robert Pierson, at the FEMA Region III Office, 615 Chestnut Street, One Independence Mall, 6th Floor, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106-4404.  


Email with any questions regarding floodplain development guidelines or the Flood Map Open House.

New apartments at Auchentoroly Terrace

3400 Auch

Sixteen new apartments are on their way to the historic Auchentoroly Terrace neighborhood in Baltimore. Meadow Development is planning to rehabilitate the historic property at the corner of Auchentoroly Terrace and the Gwynns Falls Parkway, directly across from Druid Hill Park. The 16 units will include three much-needed handicap accessible units.

The building has been vacant since the 1980s, and a fire in 2010 further damaged it. Baltimore City brought it into receivership, spending more than $100,000 install new floor joists, repair the exterior brick and make other improvements. This investment, along with the flexibility of the newly established Zoning Code, made the current redevelopment plans a reality. Both federal and local historic tax credits are key to this project's transformation.

More information about this project is available via this article in Fishbowl. 

Lexington Market design presented at UDAAP

Baltimore Lex Market

On March 14, Seawall Development presented design plans for Lexington Market to the Urban Design and Architectural Review Panel.

Currently, the new market has a target date for opening in 2021. It will include a new building and plaza where the current Arcade building is located along Lexington Street. The East Market building is to be preserved.

Seawall is responsible for building and leasing the space, but the Baltimore Public Markets corporation will maintain ownership.

For more information, please see the Baltimore Sun's article here.

Funding Opportunities.

What We're Reading.

Upcoming Planning Events.

3/28 & 4/18 - Planning Commission

The Planning Commission meets regularly each month. All meetings are held in the Phoebe B. Stanton Boardroom of the Department of Planning, located on the 8th floor of 417 East Fayette Street and are open to the public. Live streaming is available.

The agenda and staff reports are available on this website.

4/4 & 4/25 - UDAAP

The Urban Design and Architecture Advisory Panel’s role is to provide the Planning Commission and the Department of Planning design review expertise in the areas of urban design, architecture, and landscape design for all proposed master planning efforts and significant development projects with the goal of achieving high quality designs for the planned and built environment of Baltimore City. More information found here.

4/9 - Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation (CHAP)

The Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation (CHAP) oversees 33 local historic districts, over 200 landmarks, and manages a local historic preservation tax credit program.  CHAP helps preserve and revitalize neighborhoods, celebrates City history, and promotes historic preservation as a proven economic driver for Baltimore City. 

For more information on the upcoming meeting agenda, visit this site.

4/17 - Sustainability Open House

In lieu of a Sustainability Commission meeting, all are invited to join the Sustainability Open House on 4/17 at the War Memorial.

More information available via the Office of Sustainability webpage.

city of baltimore

Catherine E. Pugh,

Baltimore City Planning

417 E. Fayette Street, 8th Floor

Baltimore, Maryland 21202


department of planning

Chris Ryer, Director