Skip to content

June 2023 Community Meeting Notes

Board Members Present: Corey Jennings, Michele Baskin, Wynn Engle-Pratt, Pete Morrill, Sam Solomon, April Welch

Staff members – Jennifer McKenzie, Amanda Rothschild

Community Partners: CGA, 

Total Attendees ~29 + 4 CSX

  • Start: 7:06
  • End: 8:17


  • Alligator Mural Restoration Project Update
    • Grant from Maryland State Arts Council
    • John Ellsberry and GRIA applied for a grant to conserve, repair and repaint the Alligator Mural, 28th street ramp leading into Remington. 
    • Awarded roughly ~$41,000 to conserve and restore mural 
    • Original choice was made because of zoo on other side of Bridge, and size of the space that was open for the mural 
  • Remington Community Health and Employment Information Sessions
    • Supported by a grant from Johns Hopkins Neighborhood Fund
    • Designed to piggyback off of items identified by Neighborhood Needs Assessment
    • Hoping to bring in government agencies, workforce development groups, legal aid and other community organizations
    • Target audience is residents who are low income, families, Spanish speakers, and long term residents
    • Planning between August and November, one session per month held at Kromer Hall at Church of the Guardian Angel
    • Email to reach out with ideas or if you are willing to help
  • Grants from the Engle Family Foundation & from First National Bank
    • EFF – Wynn – grant for 30th Street park & playground to put in picnic tables (total of 4) including ADA accessible one, requesting more trash cans from City Parks but do need some help monitoring the trash levels
    • First National Bank – Corey – $2000 grant used for cleaning and greening, safety vests, Bills crew, etc
  • Adding a new Board Member
    • Chris Biliak – works for Spinello, lives on Howard, worked on planting 68 trees and creating new tree pits along Howard, helped with design for 28th & 29th and grant with Chesapeake Bay Trust to expand tree canopy in Remington
    • Votes:
      • Raise the Vote: Pete Morrill
      • Second the Vote: Wynn Engle-Pratt
      • Ayes: 29
      • Nays: 0
      • Vote passes
  • CSX presentation
    • ; email – ; phone: 443-535-6920
    • Howard Street Tunnel Rail Clearance Program – goal is to get clearance for double stacked train freight
    • Howard Street Tunnel through downtown will have very little surface impacts
    • North Ave bridge will also be impacted as it is modified but will continue to allow traffic in both directions of at least a single lane as well as the bike lanes and sidewalks, but bus stops might shift during construction
    • 26th Street Corridor – track lowering from Sisson to Greenmount Ave Increased amount of work on site 7:00 am – 4:00 pm (limited night and weekend if utilities involved)
      • Increased noise surrounding construction area and occasional supplemental lighting
      • Work to begin this Fall and through the winter, then about a year for Guilford, and then completing in 2025
    • Guilford bridge will be replaced because a sewer line prevents lowering at that point
      • will be a full detour during construction down to Barclay between 25th & 27th
      • question about bumping up bike safety on Barclay since Guilford is a bike boulevard, answer is no
      • same with ADA accessibility on Guilford that is not on Barclay, Margaret Brent is a block away
    • Sisson Street Bridge (Question from Corey) – CSX says they are in discussion to bring this issue to a closure, putting it on the city (says city is in final stages of design and will be bidding it out), no agreement as to who is paying what type of share (CSX says they have funded a portion of the design)
      • Multiple community members reiterated the difficulty of accessing the full community with Sisson Bridge still being out of commission to pedestrian and vehicular traffic
      • GRIA will follow up with other stakeholders to push for an update
    • Question about safety of double stacked trains moving through the neighborhood (from Sam) – these are not double stacked coal/oil/iron etc, these are boxed cargo, much lighter, are partnered with the Federal Railroad Administration for funding, planning, and regulatory approval, the trains are manually operated through this corridor and do have Positive Train Control on this section
    • Question about sidewalks over the bridges and fencing/green area along the corridor (Howard & Maryland specifically, from Chris & Corey) – CSX does not own the sidewalk as that is a city responsibility, CSX says to reach out about areas of fencing and areas of overgrowth that are unsafe and unsightly, they do not know if they have any sort of maintenance or programs for trash abatement along their corridor
      • GRIA inviting them to participate in an upcoming Community Cleanup to see and walk the areas of concern
    • Question from Barbara about history of working in communities before and how they have handle it there – Highlights Virginia Ave tunnel project in DC, held monthly coffee hour, twitter account with construction updates, are planning to do something similar with this project
    • Question – Does anyone on the team live in the affected neighborhoods? Answer is no

Community Announcements:

  • Pride Flags – 40 donated flags from Repair the World to distribute and hang in the community to show allyship and support for our LGBTQIA+ neighbors
  • Community Affairs Committee Meeting next Wednesday June 28th
  • Recap of Community Cleanup – partnership with Repair, 3rd Sat of July and moving to 9:30 because of heat, but we have ice coffee!
  • Call for volunteers for flyering 
  • Shift to 2nd & 3rd Sat in July for Church of the Guardian Angel  Thrift shop hours
  • Softball Game! – Saturday July 22nd in the afternoon in the Wyman fields behind Greenmount School