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To increase equity, livability, and resiliency, city leaders and community partners are taking a new approach to open space. Cities are investing in “green networks,” holistic systems that connect parks and natural resources with safe, accessible routes for both people and wildlife. Green networks enhance a city’s existing assets, while maximizing benefits for all residents, tapping into overlapping economic, environmental, and health gains.
Baltimore’s existing green space is a critical and potent community development resource. Our city boasts more than 2.6 million trees and 6,000 acres of parkland; it is also home to neighborhoods blighted by concentrations of vacant properties, symbols of deep economic disparities. By strategically transforming such liabilities into green community assets, we can open access to nature and recreation throughout the city, supporting neighborhoods most in need of investment.
The Green Network Vision for Baltimore imagines a holistic, city-wide system of nodes and corridors. The Baltimore Green Network will connect our schools, our streams and forests, our parks, our university campuses, and our centers of commerce and employment with corridors that reach every community. This new circulatory system will encourage a greener, healthier, and more equitable city. This plan builds on what is already green in Baltimore—our streams, parks, recreational areas, community gardens, and more—and it focuses on those neighborhoods where residents have the most to gain from investments in health, safety, economic development, and neighborhood beautification.
Kate Edwards, Baltimore Green Network Program Manager
Kate Edwards is the Baltimore Green Network Program Manager. She works in the Office of Sustainability to develop strategies and policies for greening vacant lots, creating better connections for residents to city parks and green spaces, and implementation of the recently drafted Baltimore Green Network Plan. Kate has worked for the Department of Planning for over 12 years and served as a Comprehensive Planner in various districts including both East and West Baltimore. She holds a Master of City and Regional Planning from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a Juris Doctor from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. Kate is also a licensed attorney in the State of Maryland.
Amy Gilder-Busatti, Landscape Architect and Critical Area Coordinator
Amy’s primary areas of responsibility include overseeing the creation of the City’s Green Network Plan and representing the Office of Sustainability on issues and initiatives related to water quality, greening, and urban design. Before joining the Office of Sustainability, Amy worked as a landscape architect and land planner with several Baltimore area architecture and engineering firms. She holds a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture degree from Ball State University and a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree from Morgan State University. Amy is also a licensed landscape architect in the state of Maryland.
The Baltimore Office of Sustainability develops and advocates for programs, policies, and actions by government, citizens, businesses, and institutions that improve the long-term environmental, social, and economic viability of Baltimore City. In addition to overseeing and tracking the implementation of the Baltimore Sustainability Plan, the Office integrates sustainability into City government operations and collaborates with other individuals and organizations working to advance community health and vibrancy.
The Office of Sustainability sits within the Baltimore Department of Planning, the City agency entrusted with guiding the physical development of the City of Baltimore. Our Department is currently renewing our focus on equity, as well as public engagement. Please read about what is currently underway on the new webpage for our Equity in Planning Committee.
BGN Vision Plan Draft Release and comment period information:
If you care about the future of blighted and disinvested communities and believe in the power of better connecting Baltimore’s green infrastructure to build a stronger city, then Baltimore Department of Planning needs to hear from you!
You are invited to review the draft Baltimore Green Network Vision Plan and provide feedback via the CiviComment portal. To improve the transparency and value of the public commenting experience, CiviComment allows you to target your comments to specific text in the plan as well as see the comments of others. If you are unable to use CiviComment, please feel free to email any comments directly to firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more about Baltimore Green Network at www.baltimoregreennetwork.com
Please keep the following dates and events on your calendar for more information about the Baltimore Green Network Plan:
Public Comment Period March 5 – April 30, 2018
Feedback on the Baltimore Green Network Vision Plan can be provided via CiviComment. This platform allows commenters to direct their comments to specific passages of the plan and to see other comments. This is an effort to enhance the value of the commenting experience for the commenters and to add transparency to the process. There is a brief registration to use CiviComment that can be completed HERE.