Baltimore Planning Academy
Each year, we host two Planning Academy workshop series for Baltimore City residents in the fall and spring. Each cohort meets for six weeks on Wednesday evenings (most recently, primarily virtually).
We accept applications for this program each January. Keep your eye on this page for the next application opportunity in January 2024.
The Baltimore Planning Academy aims to build community leadership around urban planning, zoning, and development issues through a Baltimore lens.
Goals for the Planning Academy:
- Build community across neighborhoods in Baltimore City through engagement around urban planning.
- Connect advocates and leaders to City resources, tools, and information around zoning and development.
- Empower residents to shape the future of their neighborhoods and of Baltimore.
Testimonials from Past Participants
(Our Alumni are posing with Planning Department Assistant Director, Stephanie!)
Each cohort covers the basic principles of zoning; the development review process; and urban planning. Our instructors are a mix of Planning professionals from the Department of Planning and external guest speakers. During each six-week session, we strive to offer at least one off-site tour of a development project or site in the City of Baltimore.
After completing the Planning Academy, our team wants participants to walk away with knowledge including:
- An understanding of zoning principles (eg: "By-Right" development, conditional uses, variances) and how to navigate the zoning code
- How to assess if a neighborhood plan is the right next step for their community
- How to effectively participate in a BMZA or Planning Commission hearing, and the differences in function between these two bodies
View the sample curriculum from Fall 2020 to gain insight into what you can expect as a participant!
What Brought Us Here Today? What Do We Want to Learn? The following word maps are based on the responses of participants during the introduction of the Spring 2019 Planning Academy.
Presentations from Prior Years: