Since moving NDC’s Baltimore office to North Ave in 2015, we have been excited to dig in and be a part of our new community. We’ve been working with the North Avenue Stakeholder Group for the past year, assessing strengths and opportunities, developing goals, and finding resources. It’s been a real-time example of how community partners, funders, and City agencies can work together to realize change on the ground.
This summer, we were awarded a Spruce Up grant, which is generously funded by Johns Hopkins University and Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, to plant 25 street trees in the Charles North Community. Through a block audit, our staff assessed the existing trees and streetscapes in the neighborhood to create a street tree master plan, generously supported by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation, that responded to the existing tree canopy as well as the local architecture and civic spaces. The community association first reviewed the plan at their July meeting and again at their most recent September meeting. The City’s Forestry Division assessed locations for new tree pits and is in the process of opening the feasible ones.
Based on our plan, the Baltimore Tree Trust will acquire and install 25 trees, and City Forestry will install the additional trees. Including a few dead trees which can be replaced right now, there will be a total of 44 new trees planted around the 18 blocks that comprise the Charles North community. It’s an exciting development and one that reflects a range of exciting activity happening along the North Avenue corridor. From the TIGER Grant-supported North Avenue Rising project which will expand the area’s transportation infrastructure to the streetscape improvements happening through the Front Door project, positive changes are happening.