Baltimore City Department of Planning e-News - April 2019

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Baltimore City Department of Planning eNewsletter  -  April 2019

A Message from Chris Ryer, Director

Chris Ryer

I hope you like the new look of this newsletter – we’re working to make it easier to read without reducing the information you want.

As you have seen from recent news articles, the Planning Department is in charge of maximizing the 2020 Census count.  We know there are several groups in Baltimore that are traditionally undercounted – African American seniors, families with children under 5, the homeless, recently returning citizens, limited English proficiency, and college students.


But, after all, we’re planners and we have a plan!  Come to our kick off Tuesday at Poly (see below) and get in on it!

Yours Truly,

Chris Ryer, Director

Census 2020 Open House: Please Join Mayor Young, Congressman Cummings to Ensure That #bmorecounts

Census April 23

Come out to the Census 2020 Open House, hosted by the Baltimore Complete Count Committee at Poly High School on April 23rd, from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.

Every person not counted leaves $1,800 per year, per person of funding on the table, and we need Baltimore to get its share. Over 50 State and Federal programs rely on Census data – from the School Breakfast and Lunch Programs, to Medicare and Medicaid – and we need you to ensure the programs stay funded!

The Open House be an opportunity to (1) review Baltimore's Action Plan for getting the best Census Count, (2) ask questions, and hear from our elected officials and the Baltimore City Complete Count Committee and (3) apply for Census jobs and other local job opportunities (our City mobile workforce center will be there!).

Bring your family! There will be FREE tacos, hot dogs, fun wagon for the kids, and additional games for all ages!

RSVP via the Facebook Event
Review the Action Plan online
Sign up for the email list to receive future alerts:


CIP Public Information Session Scheduled for April 29

Join the Department of Planning on Monday, April 29 at the Western District Police Station at 6 PM for a Public Information Session on the Capital Improvement Program (CIP). 

CIP Physical Improvements include: funded roads, bridges, recreation centers (such as the one at left), demolition, libraries & more.

What: Capital Improvement Program informational session

When: Monday, April 29, 2019 at 6 PM

Where: Western District Police Station Community Room (1034 N. Mount Street)

This is your opportunity to discuss the capital budget with the Department of Planning and other agency representatives! RSVP via our Facebook event page.

Paul's Place Culinary Arts Training Center Under Way

Pauls Place

Located at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Cross Street, the Paul’s Place Culinary Arts Training Kitchen will soon provide a gateway to southwest Baltimore’s Pigtown neighborhood. The project is led by the nonprofit Paul’s Place, a community anchor with more than 30 years of service to low-income residents of southwest Baltimore.

The new facility will house a full-service restaurant, catering facilities, a classroom and training kitchen. Paul's Place will train and prepare young adults for employment, matching 60 students per year with jobs in the Baltimore hospitality industry through hiring partnerships with local businesses.

Designed by Alexander Design Studio, the project will be funded through public and private sources, including New Markets Tax Credits, private and family foundations. Construction is slated to begin in summer 2019 with completion in late summer 2020.

NDC Seeking Nominees for the Larry Reich Award

Annual Awards

On June 21, join the Neighborhood Design Center (NDC) and other partners to celebrate the contributions of Maryland practitioners to the architecture and community development fields. 

By May 15, you are encouraged to nominate anyone you think exemplifies a special commitment to community-based planning and design for the Larry Reich Award.

The Larry Reich Award was established by colleagues of long-time Baltimore City Planning Director Larry Reich to commemorate his pioneering concern for “bottom-up” inclusion of grassroots groups in neighborhood initiatives. 

Here is a link to the nominations page:

Here’s the Eventbrite for the NDC awards ceremony event and celebration:

Three Landscape Architecture Firms Selected as Finalists for the Middle Branch Waterfront Design Competition

Three top landscape architecture firms have been selected as finalists to compete for the opportunity to lead the transformation of the Middle Branch Waterfront into an 11-mile park system in South Baltimore. The Parks and People Foundation is managing the project on behalf of the City of Baltimore, working with the South Baltimore Gateway partnership.

The finalists are:

  • James Corner Field Operations known for Chicago's Navy Pier and the High Line in New York City
  • Hargreaves Jones known for the New Orleans Crescent Park Waterfront project, Love Park in Philadelphia and Zaryadye Park in Moscow.
  • West 8 known for the Toronto Central Waterfront, Governors Island in New York City, and the Madrid Rio River Renewal Project in Madrid.

Concept designs from each firm will be published online and displayed in neighborhoods in late May. A jury of local representatives will assess these final submissions and recommend their winning selection to the Mayor.

For more information visit

Sustainability Open House a Success; Check out the Annual Report Online

Sustainability TH

On April 17, dozens of community organizations and residents with an interest in sustainability topics joined us at the War Memorial for our annual Sustainability Open House.  At left, Ava Richardson of our Food Matters team shows off the giveaways and educational materials at her station.

The Office of Sustainability also released their Annual Report in April. This report covers progress across all Sustainability projects and initiatives over the past year.

To view the 2019 Sustainability Plan, visit our website. To get involved with implementation, email Anne Draddy at

$10,000 Grants Available for Reducing Food Waste: Applications Due May 7

Food Matters

The Baltimore Office of Sustainability has partnered with the Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC) to launch Food Matters Baltimore funding providing up to $10,000 in funding per applicant for food waste reduction, food rescue and food scrap recycling activities in the Baltimore City.

Nonprofits, small businesses, schools and other organizations working to reduce food waste are encouraged to apply. 

Applications are due Tuesday, May 7th and can be accessed via this link. Please forward questions regarding this funding opportunity to

Green, Healthy, Smart Challenge Grant Now Open: Rolling Applications thru November


This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Green, Healthy, Smart Challenge, our grant program for student-led environmental projects!

In celebration, on April 9, volunteer teams supported school greening projects around town. Pictured here is a team of students, teachers and community volunteers at Bluford Drew Jemison STEM Academy West and Augusta Fells Savage Institute for Visual Arts. 

In total, nearly 75% of Baltimore City Schools have now received grants through this program.

Learn more about the Green, Healthy, Smart Challenge here. 

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis between now and Friday, November 2nd.

FEMA Preliminary Flood Maps: Appeals Period Open Through June 17

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. The 100 year floodplain is a high risk flood area. 

If you own or rent in the regulated floodplain, you can contact the City’s Floodplain Manager for map information services, flood response preparation, flood protection advice, financial assistance, or to file an appeal. Your appeal will be submitted to FEMA. The appeals period is April 17 - June 17.

Go the our webpage via this link to find your property on the preliminary maps and get appeals guidance. 


Email with any questions regarding floodplain development guidelines or give him a call at 410-396-1224

Funding Opportunities.

Upcoming Commission Meetings & Events.

5/8 - 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.

5/9 - 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.

5/16 - 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.

city of baltimore

Baltimore City Planning

417 E. Fayette Street, 8th Floor

Baltimore, Maryland 21202


department of planning

Chris Ryer, Director