This progress report is the first since Governor O’Malley accepted PlanMaryland and signed Executive Order 01.01.2011.22 in December 2011 outlining the steps for the plan’s implementation. This report focuses on identifying Planning Areas and establishing Implementation Strategies. It also includes an “Action Program” in which state agencies that make up the Governor’s Smart Growth Subcabinet proposed changes to better achieve the objectives of the plan.
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Identification of Planning Areas is the critical first step to implementing PlanMaryland. Planning Areas are locations for coordinated planning, management and resource allocation. The purpose of these areas is to recognize where and how local and state government, as well as the private sector, will work together to achieve the goals and objectives of PlanMaryland and local comprehensive plans.
PlanMaryland establishes five Planning Area-Place categories that local governments may employ to meet these objectives. These are:
PlanMaryland also creates five Preservation/Conservation Planning Area categories that should be used to coordinate land and resource conservation efforts with the state. Local governments may choose to identify Planning Area-Places, as well as Preservation/Conservation Planning Areas for all, portions or none of the lands within the jurisdiction. The Preservation/Conservation Planning Areas are:
The Planning Area Guidelines have been developed through a collaborative process working with local governments and State agencies. The Smart Growth Subcabinet accepted the Planning Area Guidelines on April 18, 2012 (see link below).
The Planning Area application form and instructions for local governments to use in identifying Planning Areas is now available (see link below). After reviewing this application, local governments are encouraged to contact their MDP regional planner. They can provide assistance on the identification process.
The PlanMaryland Guidance Mapping Application has been developed by the Maryland Department of Planning to help local jurisdictions identify Planning Areas consistent with draft Planning Area Guidelines. The map also illustrates how Planning Areas will relate to existing geographic priorities (Areas Currently Targeted by Existing Programs discussed in the draft Guidelines).