Baltimore Transit Equity Coalition Presentation on the Red Line
Samuel Jordan shared the importance of the now cancelled Red Line project–both in terms of transit equity and an economic boost to the area. BTEC began organizing immediately upon the cancellation of the Red Line project by Gov. Hogan. The cancellation was a gesture of ‘aggressive, punitive reinforcement of the status quo’.
Trying to offer Baltimore a new attitude when confronted with structural racism. Every facet of life in Baltimore has a racial differential at its root, and white supremacy underlies all US public policy.
Would like to engage the SWP neighborhoods in BTEC;s work to restart the Red Line project with the formation of a Baltimore Regional Transit Authority. Goal is to fight for what we need. He discussed the economic benefits of the Red Line project and the development–transit orientated, affordable housing, etc that would be benefited by the Red Line.
Petition to form the Baltimore Regional Transit Authority needs to be signed in person.
Jane asked if the structure that advocated for the Red Line had been brought back together? They are working on it–many people believed that there was nothing that could be done in the governor cancelled the Red Line, BTEC does not.
Dotie: would the Red Line have the same route? Yes, because changing the route would mean having to start the planning from the beginning. Dotie–homeowners in Poppleton had concerns about the Red Line being buried. Samuel: we live over many tunnels and have learned a lot about them. The equivalent of an x-ray is taken over the route of the Red Line (there are no homes on the route itself)–if there’s any change in foundations of surrounding homes–which hasn’t happened before–then homeowners will be compensated.
BTEC contact: Samuel.Jordan@moretransitequity.com
Community School Updates
Charles Carroll Barrister: Admin has been coordinating “class observations: as a result of the many social/emotional issues (focused on acceleration vs remediation). B2S events have attracted the most ever (over 150 students/families). Completed community garden. Read-A-thon competition w/SHAA. Making cards/books for seniors (looking for nursing home to donate to). Ravens (due to previously sponsored/refurbished school library) reached out to invite CCB to offer 150 spots for parade. Also coordination a “Story walk” for students
Vivien T Thomas: Addressing Social/Emotional issues w/students (many fights already, some students involved in multiple—only a month into school year). Thus, has been partnering/connecting with mentoring programs & activities:SAFE, Roberta’s House, Dance Programs,etc.
James McHenry: highest enrollment ever–over 700. 7th, 8th, and 6th grade has the highest number of students. Space is limited. Testing Tuesdays and Wednesdays, have had some pods test positive for covid. Holding a parent form on health and safety for families tomorrow night. Have a new Kaboom playground, but have had challenges with vandalism but kids are using the playground and love using it. Have a literacy night coming up in November. Community school needs assessment identified safety and family employment opportunities. Also seeing issues with mental health challenges. Do have a new principal (former assistant principal).
Franklin Square: staff from Franklin Square participated in the Sowebo 5K–middle school enrollment is high, seeing similar challenges. Recruiting volunteers, especially for lunch and recess. Would also love to see after school clubs and have a brochure of walking field trip opportunities. Amanda will send the details of what is needed and Jeff and Elizabeth will collect existing information and put it together. Dotie suggested connecting with CEC walking tour
Steuart Hill: Completed outdoor project @ SHAA (painting art sculpture, landscaping), Mark has also partnered with several after-school/mentoring programs— Glam, Diamonds on the Rize. Catholic Charities will be starting day care program soon when logistics have been thoroughly worked out. Community Space near completion (Nov) – Will be partnering with BCCC to offer GED classes & ESOL (Roger Wood offered ideas and possible resources for furniture, computers, etc.)
Youth Internship Program: received funding from the Research Park Corporation’s board from the Community Fund to fully staff the program. Will work with the UMB Ruth Kirk Fellows to combine administrative/operational functions of the programs
Mental Health: Abigail and Elizabeth have meetings coming up with programs who can help us define the question that we need to address and determine next steps
Chess Program: Mark Barcolod Stiles, who was running the chess program tragically passed away recently. Nate Tater has taken it over. If anyone is interested in being connected to Nate please let Elizabeth know
The Committee will be holding elections for Committee Chair at the November meeting. Anyone is eligible to run for Chair, and everyone who has attended three Committee meetings in the past 12 months will be able to vote for the Chair. If anyone has any questions about serving as Chair please contact Elizabeth.