Commercial committee meeting Jan-23-2018
Meeting started at 7:14pm
Joy Giordano – Pigtown Mainstreet (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Jane Buccheri – Hollins Roundhouse
Raven Thompson – BDC
Khandra Sears – Union Square
Dottie Page – Poppleton
Daniel Rodenburg – Union Square/SWP- Vibrant, Walkable Streets Cmte.
Lou Packett – Franklin Square/SWP – Education Cmte. Chair
Will Brockman – Union Square
Thomas Hams – Union Square
Richard Shores – Barre Circle
Sonia Eaddy – Poppleton
Brent Fuller – Pigtown
Bif Browning – Union Square Assoc. President
Marissa McDonald – Mt. Vernon/ UMB GRID (875 Hollins St)
Jake Booher – Union Square (email@example.com)
JR Lee – Hollins Roundhouse/Public Safety
Chair Troy Wilson (TW) welcome and invited introductions
Josey (owner of Suspended Brewery) welcomed committee and thanked them for
coming here and noted how special it was to be welcomed into the community.
TW – gave Michael Siepp’s regrets at not being able to attend
Façade treatment funds and inspected the 1200 block of W. Baltimore St which is
where the focus was agreed to be applied. Supposed to have a match with BDC
funds. Open to discussion on collecting $10K from each applicant and who will
administer the collection process. Thinks it would be sufficient to have them apply
and not require repayment. Some suggestions would be to remove some of the
current signs to and to acid wash the buildings to remove the lead paint. Also
suggested stripping and repainting cornices, replacing windows. Thinks all of these
things would be good use of the façade grant applications.
JR Lee – what was total amount for that block
TW – $100K.
BBrowning – Don’t we really have $200K with the matching BDC funds?
TW – Yes. We need to talk to BDC
JBuccheri – Part of what was discussed in the past was that they could repay part of
the loan so that there could be a revolving fund. Are we doing away with that?
TW – Just his opinion because it might be a logistical nightmare to collect
JB – Would we use BDC’s application process? Will the committee get to review the
TW – Yes. He will email it out and have the committee vote on it next month
BFuller – Is beautification a part of this? There were a lot of things that could be
done on the 1200 blk. Noticed that there were boarded up windows and there
would be a benefit to having fake storefronts put up. There are enough active
businesses that would make the block more vibrant. Also priced out some
streetscaping – mulching of pits etc. Mike had gotten quotes for security cameras to
place at the intersection. Some logistics on what you mount it to and where do you
TW – Baltimore City is installing new cameras in Pigtown and they had a concern
about them having blue lights. Doesn’t know if money came from the Casino Impact
BF – the CID has put up some cameras and you can add cameras into that feed. We
can leverage that for including cameras on Baltimore St.. Some balance between all
the options presented would be good
TW – noted that the lot across the street has benefited from such initiatives
Fuller – wary of spending on private property structures which is why he prefers
putting money into public spaces. Wherever we spend that money, how do we make
sure that it’s an investment for the future?
BBrowning – we should definitely reach out to Walkable streets committee to see
where there is overlap.
DRodenburg – discussed the grant application process his committee has developed
for streetscaping projects in the SWP areas. Open to groups outside of neighborhood
associations. Funds were received from BRNI funds and the application period is
TW – if anyone wants to email ideas about what the $5K can be used for let him
DRo – the projects should do something for the community and the landscape.
Mentioned some of the metrics involved
BBrowning – We specifically said we’re not going to do anything on private
properties for two reasons – not to make them a target and not give them full
control so they don’t have control over when cameras are on. We would have one
server location to store camera feeds.
DRo – reminded us that the state is still holding the funds
JR – in 2011 we had that same grant that was used to beautify the 1100 blk of W.
Baltimore St. and between then and now it looks like a bomb went off on that block.
There were supposed to be roofs replaced, windows blocked up etc. This time can
we come with a format? How do we control the process better?
TW – I don’t know if maybe we should get one contractor
BBrowning – We should have some means of quality control
JR – We should be building for 10 years down the road
TW – we will have people apply and contractors will have to be qualified. He is all
for having one contractor for consistency and would love to have someone local to
put some money back into the community.
General concerns expressed about the type of materials used for outdoor projects
and things not being built to last
JB – if we go with one contractor wouldn’t we have to come up with standards and
unified design and send out for bids and RFP and come up with specs. We would
have to hire an architect to come up with a plan.
TW – So I envisioned it in two phases. There would be an immediate impact plan. If
you do the acid washing, repair the cornices and replaces the windows you wouldn’t
need an architect since you’re not creating anything new.
Question about funding
TW – A lot of these businesses don’t have the money upfront to make these changes
so the SWP would put up the money, make the repairs.
CEaddy – Instead of just letting it go as bad debt could you ask the business owners
to contribute $2K so they have some skin in the game and there’s a pool to draw
from in the future. Where is the money for repairs coming from?
TW – This is grant funding so SWP not putting it up.
BFuller – Do you need to make a motion to ask how the funds will be allocated?
TW – not sure but has a list of business owners and will have a document next
month for what he proposes
RShores – does the money have to be spent in 2018?
Buccheri – it has to be spent in a year from the time you receive it
TW – expectation for next month is to have a draft plan in place that outlines the
work that could be done with these grants – acid washing, window replacement
(most expensive item), fix cornices, painting
DRo – they would have to be wood windows depending on the location of the
TW – well right now we have no windows so anything will be better
THams – I disagree because then you set a precedent for anything to happen
WBrockman – it’s the same argument for not using indoor products on outdoor
projects. You want to make changes that will last. Thinks it’s putting the cart before
the horse on windows and the other improvements suggested would probably give
BFuller – there are alternatives that are acceptable by CHAP so we can consider that
TW – State commercial revitalization submission not funded
Browning – we got the funding to purchase buildings but that grant would have
allowed us to stabilize them
TW – we will have more about the funding we received next month. Reminded
attendees about Annual meeting on Saturday Jan 27th at 1100 Wicomico Bldg
CEaddy – SWP will be discussing 2018 meetings and goals. We’re encouraging
neighborhoods to get as many out as possible. Food will be catered by local
businesses and will cater to diverse dietary needs. Will feature a storytelling booth
so people can say why they love Southwest Baltimore and share their fondest
memories. Bring something with you that you plan with but don’t bring to an event
(riddle). Prize for purple pride.
TW – opened the floor for announcements, old business/new business
DPage – CEC has community lunch on Friday and Saturday in Live Baltimore home
Discussion about UMB’s LNYW program which increased to $16,500, and the state
offers $2500 and there are other programs people might be eligible for.
BBrowning – Since we’re not clear about the acquisition fund can we make a note to
discuss at the next meeting since we might need to rethink which buildings we want
to acquire if we have no money for stabilization.
TW – Meeting adjourned at 8:13pm