Southwest Partnership Housing Committee
1.11.18 Meeting Minutes
Next Housing Committee meeting is scheduled for 2.8.18 at the UMB Community Engagement Center
Attendees: Diana Geis, Chair (Barre Circle), Sonia Eddy (Poppleton), Edith Gilliard (Franklin Square),
George Kleb (Bon Secours), Suzanne Welch (CPDC), Daniel Rodenburg (Union Square), Nancy McCormick
(Mt Clare), Kitty Perkins (Mt Clare), Jake Booher, Jonathan Law, Tavon Payne (TAPAVID Action Group),
Matthew Benning (Pigtown), and Amanda Marks (Otterbein).
2) Review of December Minutes. Diana reviewed the minutes and said that she would try to get
minutes emailed out in advance of meetings.
3) Poppleton Now Center West Update Sonya Eaddy
a) There is a change in Center West project management staff. Brian Grennan is new project
manager. Poppleton Now meeting with Councilmember Bullock and [Delegate Antonio] Hayes.
Poppleton Now is still trying to get Center West representatives to a meeting. The Land
Disposition Agreement appears to need to be updated. The project needs to go up for a review
with the Architectural Review Committee. Changes in the project affecting the Tax Increment
Financing need to go back to the Board of Finance for approval. The other issue is that the
acquisition authority passed in 2005 expires this year (in the Urban Renewal Plan). That will
require hearings at City Council and Planning Commission. Poppleton Now has issues with
Center West design as not being compatible with the community
b) Sonya will try to have a report every meeting.
4) Discussion of Expectations for the community in 2018 – Diana Geis
a) Goals and Objectives. Diana suggested that the committee needs to have a global vision for
addressing housing needs (renters, homeowners, landlords, developers) and addressing those
with various means and respecting those with different backgrounds and cultures. Diversity is
our strength. One object should be to have someone from every neighborhood association
represented on the Housing Committee and have someone from the Housing Committee sitting
in on other committees.
b) Recruitment for Committee Participation/ Better recruitment for committee participation. Diana
will visit each of the SWP member with Dan and Kitty and give a presentation.
c) Housing Professionals. How do we reach out and get more developers and realtors? George
said he could reach out to Enterprise Homes. All were asked to think about encouraging more
professionals to join the committee.
d) Dissemination of Information. How does the Committee communicate to the SWP members
and the larger community? We should try posting materials at Clay Pots, Zella’s, churches,
Community Engagement Center, link to resources on the website linked to the housing site.
e) Resources on Aging in Place. The committee should continue to try to look for ways of
delivering resources to seniors in the community.
5) Historic Preservation – Dan Rodenburg
a) Agreed to draft information on the historical status of all 7 neighborhoods to share.
b) Dan also agreed to make presentation to our committee when resource document is complete.
c) CHAP’s end of year report. There is a 25% increase in 2016 to 2017 on authorization to proceed
with housing activities.
6) Poe Homes. HABC has 6 different communities in Poppleton now [Vintage Gardens, Poppleton
Place, HH, The Terraces, Freemont and Saratoga, Poe Homes.] Diana and Sonya will do some initial
a) Concerns have been raise about housing conditions. Poe Homes is owned and managed by
HABC. It is not owned by the City. In the last 7 years, the goal has been to eliminate the
remaining public housing. Perkins Homes is being demolished. Half of Gilman is being
demolished. The trend is that concentrating poverty is not a positive way to have people live.
b) The thought is that more information is needed ( History, Last Physical Updates, HABC Capital
Improvements Program, Pipeline funding)
c) Two issues were discussed. Is Poe Homes slated for demolition? Are modernization funds
available to upgrade Poe Homes? The last modernization may have been in the 80s. Are they
going to do RAD for Poe Homes (put into private hands for redevelopment, renovation and
7) Update Franklin Square and Mt Claire – Michael Seipp
a) Lease to Purchase. There was a $2 million CORE requested for Lease to Purchase project, but
only $500,000 was funded, which is not enough to make the project as originally proposed work.
However, Unity is not giving up and they are getting money from Enterprise Community
Partners to come in with a Cleveland model for homeownership. They will report later to the
b) Mt. Clare. Further discussions are needed with Homes Free USA approach. They are interested
in rehabbing vacants at Saratoga and Stricker with $250,000 in CORE funding. For profit
developers don’t seem to want to be tied to homeownership.
c) Franklin Square. The 300 block of S. Gilmore has 9 vacant housings (six of which are going
through receivership.) SWP needs to find a developer to take on that project that would include
a $250,000 CORE request. The one expressing the most interest is Homes Free USA. They are
buying vacants in the 1300 W. Pratt Street. Sonya reminded the committee that Poppleton Now
has some issues with the work Homes Free USA did in the block. Poppleton Now has initially
approve the project but were surprised by design changes. Will they be more careful in
designed in the future? Sonya though the brick work was excellent. She also said that the three
stories are being turned into apartments not homeownership. Homes Free USA did talk about
homeownership in the smaller houses and apartments in the large houses. Some discussion
that a renovated building as multifamily is better than the property remaining vacant.
8) Aging in Place — Jonathan and Matt will be on committee to and look into putting in an application
to Rebuilding Together Baltimore (free repair for seniors). Jonathan will head the subcommittee.
9) Review Possible CORE Project Submissions Proposals due Late April or Early May. The following
need to go to the communities.
a) 1000 W. Fayette Street Phase 2 – Homes Free USA vacants in the block [$25k-$35k per house
b) 1300 W. Pratt Street – Homes Free USA 7 vacants in the block $15,000/house and $75,000
request. Near back of vacant police station.
c) Pratt and Mount Street – Owner seeking a developer to develop 12 three story townhouses and
8 two story townhouses [$25,000 subsidy per house required]. $500,000 CORE request. Sales
price is $250,000 average.
d) Unit Block of N. Mount (Franklin Square) – Social Impact Development to renovate 10 vacants.
$300,000 CORE request. City is encouraging demolition and new construction. Does community
want single family for sale housing?
e) Unit Block of S. Schroeder – Venroy July to renovate 4-6 vacant houses for homeownership.
$150,000 CORE request. Goal is homeownership.
f) Habitat for Humanity – 3 phases, 10 units rehab and new construction. Mount and Saratoga
Streets, working with Greater Harvest. $300,000 CORE request for homeownership with buyers
at 30-80% of AMI.
g) 420 S. Mount Street – Artist Housing (Creative Labs) Building is owned by a construction
company. Former Vitrion project site.
h) Pigtown resubmission -50 renovations South Baltimore Gateway proposal for $1 million.
i) 300 block of N. Carrolton Ave Sonya suggested that CORE funds be used to help renovate this
block and have it taken out the demolition list.
j) Discuss prioritization. Housing Committee to come back in February and March, hear
presentations and set priorities. We will try to schedule the following for the next two meetings:
February: 1-4 (a-d) in February 5-7(e-h) and 300 block N. Carrolton in March.
a) Leila Kohler-Frueh (Habitat Chesapeake)
b) Tapavid Action Group to make presentation in February. Tavon Payne.
c) Housing Committee needs to push Commissioner again that the receivership program is not
working because vacant properties, like the ones in the 1400 block of W. Baltimore Street, are
not being pushed to where a Certificate of Occupancy is issued and the property is renovated.
SWP Housing Committee, Franklin Square, Union Square and CHAP will send letters to the
d) Jonathan chairs access to equity committee. One focus is housing equity. A lot of houses got
reassessed at much higher values and worried about being priced out. He shared fliers about
appealing assessments. Michael mentioned that the “circuit breaker” exemption lowers
property tax substantially but has to be done annually.
EVENTS OF NOTE:
Jan. 22th Live Baltimore Trolley Tour
March 24 th SWP Housing Fair and Tour focused on Live Where You Work
Minutes by Suzanne Welch