Education and Workforce Development Committee
July 18th 2016 6pm
918 Lemmon St
Walter Gallas (CHAP)
Jason Vaughan (Baltimore Area Heritage Association)
Semi Annual Meeting Recap
The Southwest Partnership Semi-Annual meeting was held on June 26th. Committee members who had been in attendance reported on the event. Although the attendance at the meeting wasn’t what had been hoped, the attendees were very positive about the Committee’s goals. There weren’t any responses to the questions that the Committee asked.
Baltimore National Heritage Area (Jason Vaughan)
Much of Baltimore City, including the entire Southwest Partnership area is in the Baltimore National Heritage Area. The Area Heritage Association is a non-profit whose mission is to drive economic development through historical tourism. They have funding for a network of historic walking tours through Baltimore and are planning on developing a ‘spur’ (tentatively named the Poe Spur) that will connect through the walking trail through the westside of downtown (around the stadiums and Lexington Market).
Jason is here to present a rough draft of the attractions along the heritage trail and to get community feedback and input. The plan is for there to be three trailheads along the trail which will have information about important sites in the neighborhood, pictures, and more detailed historical information about aspects of the neighborhood’s history. There will also be printed material produced, and a CHAP sign including a picture, dates, and historical information for each site along the tour. The expected timeline is to have material printed in spring 2017 and the beginning installation of signs in fall 2017.
Committee members suggested possible sites including Franklin Square Park and St Luke’s Church, the Church of the Fourteen Holy Martyrs, the Arabber Stables, the Malachai Mills House, and the Enoch Pratt Library Building #2. Elizabeth will connect Jason with the neighborhoods associations who were not represented at the meeting, especially Poppleton.
Due to funding restrictions, the trail will not be able to go south of Pratt St, and they are moving towards having neighborhood groups put together their own tours. Jason shared an app with the Committee, 1z1.travel, which allows groups to create their own tours.
The Baltimore National Heritage Area Association is also working with the City and the various friends of the H.L. Mencken House groups to restore and manage the Mencken House. There could be interpretation and restored rooms on the first and second floors and then BNHA offices on the other floors. The house would be a resource for community events, with the caveat that the condition of the furniture and the rooms would need to be preserved.
Walter Gallas, the new CHAP representative for the area, introduced himself. He’d prefer to be involved with development and restoration projects at the beginning, rather than the end, and he wants CHAP to be a resource to the community. Betsy and other Committee members emphasized their concern about the condition of buildings along W. Baltimore St.
Walter stated that there was money for stabilization available through the CORE state funding that the City had access. The City is accepting public comments on their stabilization and demolition plan, and he will send the link to Elizabeth who will send to the Committee. Walter also mentioned that a landscape plan has been submitted for lot and building at 1001 W Baltimore St. The plan shows that the building will be demolished. CHAP had given approval for a demolition hearing for the building provided that a plan was submitted, and is soliciting community input on the plan. Elizabeth will share the contact information for the Poppleton and Hollins Roundhouse neighborhood associations with Walter. The Committee discussed possible uses for the site.
Sign Project Update
The Franklin Square Association has approved the language on the sign. The Union Square Association is having some interested community members looking at it, and the Hollins Roundhouse Neighborhood Association’s meeting was pushed back because of the July 4th holiday.
Michael is looking into other possible sources of language for the Barre Circle and Pigtown signs as the applications for placement on the National Register of Historic Places does not have a lot of information about the neighborhoods themselves. Funding for the signs was applied for through the 2017 Community Legacy funding round from the state. Funding decisions will be announced in October.
Historic Sites Database
The Committee had a discussion about the best ways to inform residents and visitors about historic sites in the area. There are a number of apps that include sites and information, but the challenge is having people access them. Suggestions included social media and printed materials. The Committee decided to invite Eli Pousson from Baltimore Heritage to a future meeting to talk about their outreach strategy.
Oral History Project
The Committee discussed how detailed and in depth the oral history project should be. It will be the main topic on the agenda for the August meeting. The next meeting will be August 15th at 6pm at 918 Lemmon St.