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Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission

2019-2020 Sustainable Growth Challenge student competition

The Sustainable Growth Commisison congratulates this year's winners!

Changing Landscapes: Farmsteads and Resort Towns
University of Maryland, College Park
​In the 2019 fall semester, UMD's Historic Preservation Studio class worked with the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) in Prince George’s County to create a heritage trail and comprehensive guide linking the communities of Aquasco, Eagle Harbor, and Cedar Haven in the southern part of the county. The students’ proposed trail will teach its users about Maryland’s past contributions to the tobacco economy, its rural communities during reconstruction, and the need for more recreational opportunities for African Americans during segregation. The completed product provides a cohesive and navigable narrative of life and culture in the area and promotes economic growth through heritage tourism in each of the three communities.
A Framework for Preservation and Growth in Creswell
University of Maryland, College Park
​This project was the product of a graduate planning course at the University of Maryland in spring 2019. Seven graduate planning students worked in collaboration with Harford County, Maryland to develop, model, and analyze alternative futures for Creswell, a rural community adjacent to Harford County’s Development Envelope and the I-95 corridor.
Long Life for Long Branch: Tools to Preserve Independent Retailers
University of Maryland, College Park
​Through a collaboration with the Partnership for Action Learning in Sustainability (PALS) at the National Center for Smart Growth, the M-NCPPC Montgomery County Planning Department commissioned this report from students in the Master of Community Planning program at the University of Maryland. Long Life for Long Branch: Tools to Preserve Independent Retailers is a toolkit that proposes a series of tactics which promote social equity and ensure that existing independent businesses in Long Branch, many of them minority-owned, can thrive along with new Metro Purple Line Transit-oriented Development (TOD). Building upon previous studies and ongoing community and county-led efforts, the course focused on an inclusive economic development strategy that would make use of zoning, financing, technical support, and real estate development to support the sustainability of Long Branch businesses into the future.
The Commission would like to thank all the students and faculty members who contributed to this year's excellent class of submissions, other projects included

About the Challenge

The Sustainable Growth Challenge, an annual collegiate competition hosted by the Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission, engages students from across the state in planning, sustainability and reinvestment issues. This summer we began reaching out to academic programs around the state to elicit their interest in this fall's competition.
The competition enables students to conduct community planning exercises, analyze economic, social and environmental aspects of sustainable growth and develop creative community solutions. The competition provides students the opportunity to interact with local leaders and engage in their own community planning processes.

Your Next Steps



​Joe Griffiths ​Jim Kruger
​Maryland Department of Planning ​Maryland Sustainable Growth Commission
​410.767.4556 ​410.952.6496
Joseph.Griffiths@maryland.gov JamesKruger@comcast.net
Winning teams will be recognized at the commission’s annual awards ceremony to be held in the spring of 2020.
Special thanks to the National Association of Realtors® and the Southern Maryland Association of Realtors® for their previous support of this initiative.

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