Oct 09 2008
The American Planning Association named Charles Village, Baltimore one of the 10 greatest neighborhoods in America for 2008.
Recognizing the limits of their authority to address safety concerns, residents, citizen groups, and alliances from Baltimore’s Charles Village neighborhood turned to the Maryland State Assembly for help. They proposed establishing a benefits district so they could collect a small levy from property owners for additional security and sanitation services. At the time such districts had been established for U.S. downtowns and commercial zones only and not for residential areas.
The neighborhood’s proposal was approved, enabling the Charles Village Community Benefits District to be formed in 1994. Funded by a minimal levy on property values, the district has successfully managed to cut crime in half since its inception while serving as a model for three additional service districts in Baltimore.
Given the neighborhood’s strong and dedicated activist community, economic and social diversity, and memorable character enhanced by designs from the renowned Olmsted Brothers firm, APA has named Charles Village as one of 10 Great Neighborhoods in America for 2008.
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In addition to the Charles Village Ranking, Annapolis was ranked as having one of the 10 greatest streets in America.
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