The Maryland Chapter of the American Planning Association Announces 2019 Award Winners

It is that time again where we honor the great planning work performed by professionals throughout the State of Maryland. Our 2019 Awards Ceremony will take place on the evening of Monday, October 7th during the 2019 Biennial Conference at the Rocky Gap Resort • Casino in Cumberland, MD. All Chapter members are encouraged to attend.

The 2019 Award Winners Are:

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Livable Frederick MP
Livability is the sum of the factors that add up to our quality of life in Frederick County. It is the ability to easily get where you’re going, to enjoy great parks, to benefit from great schools, to find support when you need it, to form bonds with your neighbors, to have access to excellent stores, restaurants, and entertainment, to have good jobs close to home, to enjoy the revitalizing qualities of our forests, rivers, mountains, and countryside, and to be in harmony with the systems that surround, support, and underlie our ability to live happy, healthy, long, and prosperous lives.
To preserve, sustain, and create livability, we must define and advance our shared values as they impact our built and natural environments, our community health, our economic prosperity, our social stability and equity, our education, and our cultural, entertainment and recreational opportunities. This is the central ambition of Livable Frederick. It is a bold and visionary purpose, but one that is at the heart of every technical and practical effort to plan our communities.

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Transportation Action Guide for Urban Communities
The Transportation Action Guide for Urban Communities is a concise, colorful and comprehensive playbook that provides solutions for managing multi modal transportation and parking in the vibrant and growing Route 1 Corridor. Crystal Saunders Hancock, planner coordinator with the Prince George's County Planning Department, held numerous meetings with municipalities, residents, businesses and the University of Maryland and directed research from a transportation consultant to produce this exciting document. Twenty-one recommendations, each on a single page, contain easy-to-read policies and infrastructure steps to meet the needs of the corridor. Lead agencies are designated to implement each recommendation, and maps and photos illustrate where each reform should occur.
Although written for the Route 1 Corridor, the report's recommendations on transit, bicycle networks, pedestrian design, walkability, parking and financing can be easily transferred to any area undergoing the kind of urbanization Route 1 has experienced. The playbook demonstrates high-level planning expertise. Just as important, it is presented in a user-friendly format that increases the likelihood agencies and community stakeholders will implement its recommendations.

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A Framework for Preservation and Growth in Creswell
This course synthesizes seven initial contributing studies by the seven students in the class around one specific project in which the entire team participates. It creates specific tasks and ongoing specializations for each student which are merged into generalized team knowledge and experience around a difficult planning challenge – the selective expansion of an urban growth boundary into the Creswell area of Harford County. The logic of this expansion is to provide various options for significantly expanding the County’s housing supply (and, maybe, other economic activities) by 2040.
While focused on one part of one County, this project represents a crucial, prototypical challenge for the State’s central counties, all of whom established some form of urban growth boundaries 30 - 40 years ago. They have not expanded them since. Housing supply dwindles and costs accelerate. Infill and redevelopment help but cannot solve the problem. The acute, paradigmatic challenge, therefore, is: how can a county add significant new housing in largely rural areas, with or without the extension of utilities, in a sustainable way? Solving this problem well for Creswell can provide options for many Counties facing similar challenges.

University of Maryland - College Park
Jerah Smith
Sarah Latimer
Kari Nye
AnnaLinden Weller
Bilal Ali
Nick MacKereth
Russell Ottalini

Faculty Advisors
Uri Avin, FAICP
Matt Noonkester, AICP

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Ashlee Green
I’m Ashlee Green and I am a project manager for the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. I currently manage the neighborhood revitalization capital project grants for the Upper Eastern Shore (Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Talbot and Caroline Counties) as well as Harford County. Before joining the department in 2017, I worked as a program assistant for the Black History Program for the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission where I assisted in managing three historic properties and provided black history programming year round. I have a Master’s in Community Planning from the University of Maryland-College Park and certificate in Historic Preservation. I am originally from Gary, Indiana and attended Indiana University where I received my Bachelor’s in Journalism and African/African-American Diaspora Studies with a minor in Latino Studies.

My interest in planning stemmed from my love of historic preservation and an internship at a lobbying firm. I have always loved history but the overlap between it and the built environment is what led me to planning. I wanted to know more about how to save buildings, adaptive reuse that could take place in buildings, and how those uses could solve problems such as housing affordability and sustainability.  I also worked at a lobbying firm that represented a variety of clients. I found that clients and issues surrounding housing, community and economic development, and transportation intrigued me the most.

As a project manager for the Department of Housing and Community Development, I like to see the impact we have on large and small communities alike. To see the impact of a facade program on a Main Street, a pocket park in neighborhood, or the renovation of a historic building that now houses non-profit or an incubator is very pleasing to see from start to finish.

I think we should be paying more attention to housing affordability.  Housing affordability has now hit a 10-year low. U.S. homes dropped to their least affordable point since 2008. Although it can be deemed as a “wicked” problem, it a problem that it sometimes swept under the rug.