Planning Practice Monthly, May 2020 Edition

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Friday, May 29, 2020

Planning Assistance in Action

Maryland Census 2020: Challenges and Adaptations

Maryland Census 2020

During these uncertain and unprecedented times of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) has found ways to adapt traditional, in-person census outreach efforts to engage the public and communities across the state. The goal of the 2020 Census is to ensure as complete a census count as possible of all Marylanders, while also recognizing the extraordinary circumstances of “stay-at-home” orders and social distancing and keeping Census workers, volunteers, and the public safe. The good news is that despite the numerous challenges, Maryland has positioned itself as one of the nation’s early leaders in terms of outreach and census self-response rates.

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MEMA: How the “Hurricane People” Are Supporting Maryland’s COVID-19 Pandemic Response

MEMA hdqrtrs

Typically, when we think of an organization like the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), we think of planning and coordinating the state’s preparedness and response to disasters like hurricanes, tornadoes, flash floods, terrorist attacks, and the resulting need for interim shelter, feeding, and medical treatment of those injured or displaced. However, MEMA is also the organization responsible for helping coordinate Maryland’s preparedness and response to other types of disasters, including the current COVID-19 pandemic.

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Women in Planning Series: Part II

Constance Lieder: A Pioneer in Maryland Planning

Constance Lieder

If you have been a planner for a while, then you have likely worked on your share of comprehensive plans -- especially if you have moved around a bit, as I have over the years. The first thing I always did when preparing to write a new comprehensive plan was to read the plan that came before it, to get the lay of the land of the community. But what if there was no prior plan? That is where our pioneers of planning, like Constance (“Connie”) Lieder, come in. Lieder, like so many of her contemporaries, laid the very groundwork for the future of planning across the state, not to mention blazing a trail for professional women planners in Maryland.

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Resources and Tools

New! Planning is Updating Our Statewide Land Use Map


The Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) is initiating the 2020 update to its statewide Land Use Map, the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) product formerly known as the “Land Use Land Cover” map. The Land Use Map will show generalized locations of developed land, including varying densities of residential land and commercial, industrial, institutional, other developed, and undeveloped resource land uses.

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Commuter Choice Maryland: Smart Commuter Choices During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond

Commuters Choice

Have you heard of Commuter Choice Maryland?  If not, check it out! Commuter Choice Maryland is a program of the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) designed to connect commuters and businesses to numerous online tools, resources, and opportunities. The goal of the program is to reduce congestion on Maryland roadways, improve air quality, and help Marylanders enhance their quality of life.

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Planning in Progress

We will continue to provide updates about these exciting efforts as they develop in upcoming issues

Local Communities Seek New Ways to Respond to Hunger and Homelessness During the Pandemic

Camp Hope - photo source - Salisbury Independent

Even under normal circumstances, some of the most vulnerable people in our country’s population are those who are homeless and/or hungry. Without adequate shelter, sanitation, a stable supply of nutritious and fresh food, they are already subject to physical and mental illness, disease, exposure, malnutrition, and violence at much higher rates than the average American. But in times of a pandemic, these vulnerabilities worsen.

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Congratulations to David Cotton!

TrailGuide Cover 16th Edition

David Cotton, ARC Program Manager and Director of Planning’s Western Maryland Regional Office, made the cover of the 16th edition of TrailGuide, the official, authorized guidebook for traveling the Great Allegheny Passage and C&O Canal Towpath.

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MPCA Corner

Request for Session Proposals Extended


In last month’s Planning Practice Monthly, the Maryland Planning Commissioners Association (MPCA) announced a request for proposals for the upcoming fall conference, scheduled for November 9 and 10 in Westminster. The MPCA is closely monitoring the pandemic and considering virtual conference options. If you would like to share your thoughts about a potential online MPCA conference this fall, please contact Joe Griffiths, Local Assistance and Training Manager for the Maryland Department of Planning.

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Meet the Planning Staff

Kristen E. Humphrey

K. Humphrey

Kristen Humphrey joined Planning in August of 2017 as an Infrastructure and Development Planner. In this position, she worked primarily to assist the department in its role within the Maryland Public School Construction Program. In early 2018, Kristen began researching, writing, and editing articles for Planning’s e-newsletter, Planning Practice Monthly.

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Continuing Education & Training


In each newsletter, we highlight the most relevant and timely upcoming events. Our website does include many additional events, so please visit it regularly for updates. Listings are searchable by subject.

Upcoming Conferences and Seminars

Planning related conferences in Maryland and nearby states.

Warning Triangle

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this section is temporarily suspended For More Information

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Listed webinars are typically free or low cost and cover a wide range of planning related issues. Many include CM credits.


The Impact of Site Layout on Construction Costs
Thursday, June 4 @ 2 p.m.

Parks are an Essential Business
Thursday, June 11 @ 12 pm
AICP CM Approved

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Training Around the State

Workshops and classes offered by state agencies or our partners.

Warning Triangle

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this section is temporarily suspended For More Information

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Funding Opportunities

Federal, state and/or non-governmental funding.


FY20 Region 3 Wetland Program Development Grants
Environmental Protection Agency - Deadline: June 30

Urban Agriculture and Innovation Production (UAIP) Competitive Grants Progras 
United States Department of Agriculture - Deadline: July 6

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