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Author Archives: Joe Nathanson

Innovation in exurbia (access required)

In earlier times my work would occasionally take me to meetings at the Carroll County government offices. Leisure trips on a weekend would take me to some of the county’s small towns or a visit to the Carroll County Farm ...

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Those urging greenways in Baltimore have reason for optimism (access required)

The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy sees great potential in linking up our existing parklands and urban trails with the nation’s derelict industrial corridors and abandoned railroad tracks. Under the banner of its TrailNation initiative, the conservancy is helping communities from coast to ...

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A prototype for the next Baltimore (access required)

The recently released  2020 U.S. Census apportionment data revealed that Maryland had managed to keep pace with the nation in terms of population gains over the last decade. Population data for City of Baltimore, the counties and smaller pieces of ...

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Our changing America (access required)

The recent tragic events in Atlanta have had me thinking about a consulting assignment I undertook in the region about 15 years ago. The Atlanta Regional Commission, the regional planning entity with responsibility for a 10-county metro area, was assessing ...

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Opening doors in Md. with housing opportunities (access required)

Among his earliest childhood memories, Brian McLaughlin recalls riding his little bike and playing in the green spaces afforded by his Columbia, Maryland, neighborhood. I had a chance to interview McLaughlin recently after hearing him speak about his new role ...

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Getting serious in Maryland about transit (access required)

Schoolchildren stranded as they wait for a bus to get home from school. Workers constantly risking loss of a job due to lateness as they encounter unreliable transit connections. Persistent reports of buses out of service due to mechanical breakdowns, ...

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Looking ahead to a promising 2021 (access required)

We know it has been a tough year, but as 2020 comes to an end and we enter the new year, we have been receiving a flurry of announcements of major development projects suggesting that we may be coming out ...

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Confronting the evictions crisis

Gov. Larry Hogan’s recent announcement of grants totaling $19.3 million for eviction prevention benefiting communities around the state is a welcome recognition of a looming crisis. The funds include $2 million for Baltimore city, $3 million for Baltimore County and ...

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Blue metros in a divided America (access required)

If you were to take a look at the map of the United States through the lens of our current political polarization, you would notice some unmistakable patterns in blue and red. Whether you were to view a map showing ...

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Rethinking regional train service (access required)

Back in the early 1970s, while a relatively new member of the staff of the Regional Planning Council (a predecessor to today’s Baltimore Metropolitan Council), I had occasional interaction with the chairman of the council, Milton H. “Mickey” Miller. The ...

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