Presented by the Maryland Department of Planning
The Maryland Sustainable Growth Awards celebrate significant achievements by individuals, businesses, organizations, or local governments to realize the
12 planning visions adopted by the Maryland General Assembly in 2009. The annual awards promote exemplary work that represents or inspires collaboration, innovation, conservation, community impact, and quality of life.
The 11th annual Sustainable Growth Awards were presented by Secretary Rebecca L. Flora, AICP,
at awardee locations throught December 2023
2023 Sustainable Growth awards
The Maryland Department of Planning recognized the following people and projects. See
Leadership & Service
For activities or accomplishments that advance public appreciation, understanding, or involvement in promoting smart growth and sustainable communities at the state, regional, or local level.
Baltimore County Retrofit Mapping
Baltimore County Department of Planning created a thorough and data-driven approach to “Retrofit Mapping,” which was essential to and incorporated into the Growth Framework of their Draft Master Plan 2030. Gathering significant public input, this initiative has meaningfully advanced the community’s involvement in promoting smart growth and sustainable communities, and has produced a path to supporting intensified land uses in the area.
Josh Hastings - Sustainability Advocate
As the executive Director of Forever Maryland, Chairman of the Delmarva Land and Litter Collaborative, and as developer and leader of two coalitions that led to the establishment of the Greenspace Equity program and adoption of the Maryland the Beautiful act, Josh has made impressive strides at furthering sustainable policies and initiatives in the State.
For facilitating or creating development that addresses at least one or more of Maryland’s 12 Planning Visions.
College Park Hollywood Streetscape Project
The Hollywood Streetscape Project has revitalized what was previously a barren and busy intersection in College Park to make it a center for commercial activity and community celebrations. The project has added biking and pedestrian infrastructure, stages for live performances and social gatherings, and open spaces for recreational activities. Touching on nearly all 12 Planning Visions, the project effectively represents community design and brings an inviting new space to the residents of College Park and its visitors.
Thrive Montgomery 2050 - General Plan for Montgomery County, MD
Thrive Montgomery 2050 is the recent update to Montgomery County’s General Plan, and the first comprehensive update to the county’s General Plan in over 50 years. It defines the overarching land use policies and context for all public and private development and infrastructure in the county and will guide all future master planning. The plan anticipates a county that will become more urban, more diverse, and more interconnected, with three overarching objectives of economic competitiveness, racial equity and social justice, and environmental health and resilience.
Preservation and Conservation
For accomplishments in protecting or improving farms, forests, natural resources and the waters of Maryland.
Howard County Purchased Conservation Easement Pilot Program
In 2022, Howard County Government, in partnership with the Howard County Conservancy, a local land trust, launched the Howard County Purchased Conservation Easement Pilot Program. The first of its kind in Maryland, this program specifically targets nonprofit property owners with environmentally sensitive land and provides them with financial incentives to protect environmentally sensitive areas on their property.
Plantation Park Heights Urban Farm
Plantation Park Heights Urban Farm was born out of a group of Caribbean/American citizens’ desire to effect change and have a positive impact on the lives of young adults that reside in the Park Heights community of Baltimore, Maryland. The farm’s primary missions are to develop the next generation of farmers by training young adults and providing fresh produce and herbs to the local community. On what was once seven acres of vacant lots, the farm has now grown and distributed over 200,000 pounds of food to 6,300 households.