Tag: Vacant houses

Lecture: Health and Vacancy in Baltimore

Join us for our annual health and design forum featuring a panel of local public health and design professionals addressing public health concerns of vacant buildings and approaches and solutions to addressing them.

  • Eli Pousson, Baltimore Heritage, “History of Vacancy in Baltimore”
  • Joshua Sharfstein, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, “Public Health Perspective on Vacancy”
  • Stephanie Smith, City of Baltimore, “Policies and Approaches to Address Urban Vacancy”
  • Jennifer Goold, Neighborhood Design Center, “Health, Vacancy, and Advocacy in Baltimore”
  • Klaus Philipsen, Arch Plan, Inc., “Health and Architecture in Contemporary Baltimore”

This event is free but registration is required. 1.5 AIA/CES HSW LUs available

Project CORE shares plan for the demolition of 149 vacant buildings in 2017

The Maryland Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD) recently shared their plans to demolish a second round of vacant buildings under the Project CORE program. Since Project CORE (short for Creating Opportunities for Renewal and Enterprise) began last January, the program has supported the demolition around three hundred and seventy-five properties and granted around sixteen million in funding for community development projects. We may not find a new use for every vacant building in Baltimore but we want you to know what buildings Project CORE is tearing down and how can you share your comments.

613 S. Monroe Street, Baltimore

In the second year of Project CORE (known as Phase II), the state and Baltimore City are seeking to demolish one hundred and forty-nine buildings (grouped into thirty-eight “demolition clusters”). You can browse the list of demolition clusters in our open Google Sheet or with our interactive map. You can also see photographs of each demolition cluster on Flickr. You can compare this year’s properties to the list we shared last April before the first round of demolition.

1138 Mosher Street, Baltimore

If you look at our sheet, you can see demolition clusters in fifteen different neighborhoods. The largest number of clusters are in West Baltimore neighborhoods including Sandtown-Winchester, Upton, and Harlem Park (all part of the Old West Baltimore Historic District). In East Baltimore, affected neighborhoods include Broadway East, East Baltimore Midway, and Johnston Square. The vacant buildings are a mix of different ages, styles, and sizes. They include the one remaining building from the Alma Manufacturing Company; small, two-story alley houses on Mosher Street; early worker cottages on Lanvale Street; a distressed shingle-sided home in Arlington; and an unusual brick house on Franklintown Road.


Although DHCD administers Project CORE, Baltimore Housing selected these demolition clusters for the state. Last year, Baltimore Housing staff met with community groups and shared possible demolition clusters with residents. They also worked with the Baltimore City Department of Planning to collect feedback from residents on their priorities for demolition and community greening as part of the city’s new Green Network Plan.

The state’s preservation review process (commonly known as “Section 106”) gives Baltimore residents, preservation advocates, and community groups another opportunity to share comments or concerns on the proposed demolitions before the state can award funding to demolition contractors.

If you lead community organization affected by this program, we hope you can share any comments with DHCD by contacting Melissa Archer, Project Manager at melissa.archer2@maryland.gov.

We also want to hear your thoughts on Project CORE and these buildings. If we can find a new use for a vacant building, we might be able to avoid a demolition. Your feedback helps us continue to push for reinvestment in historic communities. You can share comments online or contact our director Johns Hopkins at hopkins@baltimoreheritage.org or 410-332-9992.

Finally, we want you to take a look at our new online resource for residents dealing with vacant buildings: Vacant Buildings 101. We are working with the Community Law Center to host workshops and publish an online guide to taking action on vacant buildings in your neighborhood. This program is supported by funding from Preservation Maryland and the Maryland Historical Trust through the Heritage Fund. Please take a look, share your comments, or sign up to join us at our next Vacant Buildings 101 workshop on March 25.

2858–2860 W. Lanvale Street, Baltimore, 21216

Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference 2016

On September 28-30, 2016, approximately 1,000 urban changemakers will gather in Baltimore, Maryland, for the seventh national Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference (RVP).

Themed “In Service of People and Place,” the seventh RVP will explore how work to reclaim vacant properties can, first and foremost, improve the wellbeing of residents and the places they call home. The Conference will explore strategies to strengthen neighborhoods that are being left behind in the housing recovery and serve residents who continue to face the impacts of vacancy, abandonment, and disinvestment. Conference sessions will highlight work from around the country, including Baltimore.

Join the Center for Community Progress email list to receive updates in the coming months about  session proposals, registration, and more.

Conference inquiries should be directed to Courtney Knox, Director of National Leadership and Education at cknox@communityprogress.net or 877.542.4842 x20.

Citywide Demolition and Stabilization Meeting

Baltimore Housing and the Baltimore City Department of Planning are hosting a meeting at Edmondson-Westside High School inviting residents to identify potential demolition or stabilization sites and to learn more about Project C.O.R.E. and other initiatives to address vacant properties.

For questions or for ADA accommodation, please contact Kate Edwards at 410-396-5934 or email kate.edwards@baltimorecity.gov.

Learn more about Project CORE’s impact on historic neighborhoods and our joint response with our partner Preservation Maryland.


How can we make up for the loss of historic rowhouses under Project CORE?

Last month, Baltimore Heritage and Preservation Maryland proposed a strategy to mitigate the loss of historic rowhouses under Project CORE. Our proposal focuses on:

  • stabilizing historic buildings that can be saved and reused,
  • supporting nonprofit and local government staff positions to guide the implementation the project,
  • and documenting the buildings selected for demolition.
3208-3210 Elgin Avenue. Courtesy DHCD.
3208-3210 Elgin Avenue. Courtesy DHCD.

Baltimore Heritage and Preservation Maryland, along with our nonprofit partner, the Baltimore National Heritage Area, recently presented our proposal to city and state agencies as part of the ongoing preservation review of Governor Hogan’s Project CORE (Creating Opportunities for Renewal and Enterprise).

As we shared last month, CORE provides around $75 million in state funds for demolishing and stabilizing vacant buildings in Baltimore over four years. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development and Baltimore Housing have agreed that 10% of the Project C.O.R.E. funding should go to mitigating the loss of rowhouses proposed for demolition inside designated historic districts.

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