Laurie Feinberg Retires After 34 Years with Baltimore City Government
Wednesday Jul 21st, 2021
After a 34-year career with Baltimore City, Laurie Feinberg is retiring from her role as Assistant Director for the Department of Planning.
Feinberg's career spanned a number of different roles within the Department of Planning, including urban designer, community planner, division chief and most recently, Assistant Director.
Laurie began her career in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Trained as an architect at Cornell University, she worked as a designer with an interest in shaping cities. Laurie Feinberg joined the Department of Planning in the 80s, part of a planner "cohort" that also included Director Chris Ryer. As a planner with a design background, she could nimbly move between technical and visual/design work.
According to Director Ryer, “Laurie’s retirement leaves a gigantic hole in the institutional knowledge of the Department. It will take a team of at least five people pulled together to provide the knowledge and expertise that was in Laurie’s head”.
One of the highlights of Laurie's career was re-hauling the zoning code for the first time in 40 years. This was a once-in-a-lifetime undertaking that modernized the code, making it more predictable and easier to use while also more flexible. The zoning code re-write process also spurred a unique opportunity to examine the zoning code through a public health lens.
During her career, Laurie prioritized community engagement and racial equity. She was a vocal early supporter of the work of DOP's Equity in Planning Committee and the launch of the Planning Academy. She tirelessly worked to engage young people, bringing urban planning into Baltimore City schools during the 2006 Comprehensive Plan outreach process.
Over her multi-faceted career, Laurie Feinberg never stopped working, growing or seeking out ideas that were new and fresh in the planning world.
This summer, Laurie Feinberg is a featured designer as part of the Say it Loud digital exhibit. A collaboration of BMore NOMA, AIA and the Baltimore Architecture Foundation, the exhibit celebrates the work of diverse designers of the built environment in Maryland. The exhibit can be accessed online via this link: https://www.beyondthebuilt.com/say-it-loud-maryland. This is a project of Beyond the Built Environment, an initiative to elevate the work of minority and women designers and architects.