Building and Strengthening Neighborhoods and People

Sponsor Spotlight: Seawall Development Company

The GHCC Blog Team recently checked in with Thibault Manekin of Seawall Development Company to talk about the importance of community-driven development and how Seawall is making Baltimore a Strong City. 

Tell us a bit about Seawall Development… Seawall uses the built environment to make neighborhoods better places. We do that by breathing a new life back in to abandoned old historic and industrial buildings. We then take the finished product and fill it with the people who in their everyday lives are out there making our cities better places.

Seawall has been instrumental in the redevelopment of Remington, and GHCC has been proud to be your partner in this work, can you explain your approach to community-minded development? It’s all about listening. None of these projects are our idea. We pride ourselves on developing projects from the inside out, where the end user is actually dreaming up their own space.

Miller's Court was one of Sewall's first Remington projects and now houses low-cost living options for teachers, Charmington's Cafe,  and a variety of nonprofits including Wide Angle Youth Media.

Miller’s Court was one of Sewall’s first Remington projects and now houses low-cost living options for teachers, Charmington’s Cafe, and a variety of nonprofits including Wide Angle Youth Media.

Tell us about some of your upcoming or current projects. We are really busy in Remington with our Remington Row project. We are also really excited about some charter schools we are helping to build and the Parkway Theatre project in Station North.

Why did Seawall choose to sponsor the 2015 Neighborhood Institute? We love GHCC and the great work they do in this part of Baltimore and are honored to be a partner in anything they are doing.

As you may know, GHCC is changing our name to ‘Strong City Baltimore’… tell us what you think makes Baltimore a Strong City. Baltimore is strong because of the passionate people that make up this great city and their never give up attitude.

Many, many thanks to Thibault and the whole Seawall team for sponsoring the 2015 Neighborhood Institute at the Baltimore Design School back in April. If you would like to sponsor a Strong City Baltimore event, please contact Emma Simpson at esimpson@strongcitybaltimore.org or 410-261-3507.


Neighborhood Institute Workshop Preview: “Design in Detail” by Laura Wheaton

If you are looking to plan a long-term community project of any size, the “Design in Detail” workshop led by Laura Wheaton, Program Manager at the Neighborhood Design Center, is for you! To participate in this workshop, and many more, register for the 2015 Neighborhood Institute here.

One of the more difficult meetings a neighborhood can hold is a visioning meeting. How do you create a community vision that is both aspirational and concrete? How do you plan both short-term and long-term? How do you create consensus around your vision? These are problems all neighborhoods struggle with, whether you are trying to plan a block project or create a development plan for your area. At this year’s Neighborhood Institute, this workshop will provide valuable tips for constructing a group vision.
Neighborhood Design Center Staff Portraits
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The Neighborhood Design Center (NDC) provides pro-bono design services for community-initiated projects by leveraging the support of volunteer professionals. They coordinate and facilitate Visioning Workshops designed to bring community members together and construct a vision for their planning project, whether it is an edible garden, new building, or neighborhood master plan. Their workshop will share the best practices of coordinating and facilitating your own visioning process, including logistics, sample exercises, and facilitation tips. It will also discuss how and when communities can access pro-bono design assistance from NDC.

GHCC’s annual Neighborhood Institute will be held on Saturday, April 18th, 2015 at the Baltimore Design School (1500 Barclay Street). To register for the event, follow this link. This year, the Institute will feature 36 workshops on a variety of topics relevant to community issues and City-wide opportunities. Check back here regularly for a preview of some of the workshops and presenters you can expect to see at this year’s Institute.

 


Neighborhood Institute Workshop Preview: “Beautify Your Block” with Kari Snyder

If you and your neighbors are looking to improve your block, ‘Beautify Your Block’ by Kari Snyder of Southeast CDC will give you some creative ideas for a new project! Register for this workshop, and many more, here.

Have you always imagined making improvements on your block? Maybe you would like to see more trees or planters on the street to enhance the physical beauty of your block. Maybe you would like to see everyone on your block get new porch lights to improve your neighborhood’s safety and walkability. Whatever your idea might be, block projects are a simple way to improve the physical appeal of your block and create a more unified appearance, all while building a stronger community.

Kari Snyder of Southeast CDC (left) with a Southeast Baltimore resident.

Kari Snyder of Southeast CDC (left) with a Southeast Baltimore resident.

Block projects might seem like a straightforward way to make physical improvements to your neighborhood, but they also represent a mechanism for bringing together neighbors and beginning to explore complicated community issues. In the workshop, Kari Snyder of Southeast CDC will share some successful project implemented in the Highlandtown and Patterson Park neighborhoods. The presentation will explore the successes and challenges of these projects and resources that you can use for projects in your community. Kari will share what types of block projects have worked in the past, how to avoid common pitfalls, and how to find funding for your project.

GHCC’s annual Neighborhood Institute will be held on Saturday, April 18th, 2015 at the Baltimore Design School (1500 Barclay Street). To register for the event, follow this link. This year, the Institute will feature 36 workshops on a variety of topics relevant to community issues and City-wide opportunities. Check back here regularly for a preview of some of the workshops and presenters you can expect to see at this year’s Institute.

 


Neighborhood Institute Workshop Preview: “Bringing Families to Baltimore” by Steven Gondol and Annie Milli

If your neighborhood is looking to better attract young families and new homeowners, ‘Bringing Families to Baltimore’ by Steve Gondol and Annie Milli of Live Baltimore is the workshop for you. To attend this workshop, and many others, register here.

Across Baltimore’s many diverse neighborhoods, attracting and retaining young families is incredibly important. Young families are more likely to invest and work to improve their communities, but even the most loyal, active families will pack up and move elsewhere in the City, or to the County, if they feel their neighborhood is not meeting all of their needs.

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Steve Gondol, Executive Director of Live Baltimore.

 

Neighborhoods that are losing families and young homeowners are not typically healthy, growing neighborhoods. Live Baltimore’s Way to Stay family retention program has analyzed Baltimore’s neighborhoods, looking at factors that are most likely to attract and retain young families. These selections are based on feedback and criteria from real City families to identify “Five Star Family Neighborhoods”. In their workshop, Steve Gondol and Annie Millli of Live Baltimore will share the Way to Stay selection criteria and how you can improve your standing as a family-friendly neighborhood. Check out this link to see if your community is already a Five Star Neighborhood. During their workshop, Steve and Annie will share how neighborhoods can market themselves to families and improve their Way to Stay ranking.

Many thanks to Live Baltimore for sponsoring the 2015 Neighborhood Institute. LiveBaltimore_logo_tagline_2013_rgb_hires

GHCC’s annual Neighborhood Institute will beheld on Saturday, April 18th, 2015 at the Baltimore Design School (1500 Barclay Street). To register for the event, follow this link. This year, the Institute will feature 36 workshops on a variety of topics relevant to community issues and City-wide opportunities. Check back here regularly for a preview of some of the workshops and presenters you can expect to see at this year’s Institute.

 


Neighborhood Institute Workshop Preview: “Come Love a Forest Patch” by Katie Lautar

If you are looking to protect the natural beauty and biodiversity of your neighborhood, ‘Come Love a Forest Patch’ would be perfect for you! To participate in this workshop, and others, register for the 2015 Neighborhood Institute here.

Even in Baltimore’s urban environment, many large forest patches exist. In fact, 34% of Baltimore’s tree canopy comes from forest patches – areas with over 10,000 square feet of tree canopy. These patches provide important ecosystem and wildlife benefits while contributing to the diversity and beauty of Baltimore City. Forest patches exist all over the City, sometimes hidden in the alleys behind our main streets – there is probably one in your neighborhood already!

Katie Lautar of Baltimore Green Space (photo courtesy of Baltimore Green Space).

Katie Lautar of Baltimore Green Space (photo courtesy of Baltimore Green Space).

As part of our Greening track, we are excited to partner with Baltimore Green Space to offer the “Come Love a Forest Patch” workshop at the 2015 Neighborhood Institute. This presentation will be led by Katie Lautar of Baltimore Green Space and include presentations from forest stewards from Govans Urban Forest, Springfield Woods, and Wilson Woods. Come learn about forest patches, discuss their environmental and social value, and share the basics of forest care in a patch near you. The forest patch stewards will also share stories of caring for their forests.

GHCC’s annual Neighborhood Institute will be held on Saturday, April 18th, 2015 at the Baltimore Design School (1500 Barclay Street). To register for the event, follow this link. This year, the Institute will feature 36 workshops on a variety of topics relevant to community issues and City-wide opportunities. Check back here regularly for a preview of some of the workshops and presenters you can expect to see at this year’s Institute.