Baltimore County officials say three local communities will be eligible for state funding for projects to improve their economies, housing, transportation and the environment based on their designation by the state as sustainable communities.
Hillendale/Parkville/Overlea, Catonsville/Patapsco and Greater Dundalk were named "sustainable communities" by the state Department of Housing and Community Development and the state Department of Planning.
The county picked the areas for consideration because of the potential for revitalization, and the county planning department worked with the communities to draw up strategies to encourage local investment.
Now, the communities must submit applications to the state requesting funds for specific projects.
In Hillendale/Parkville/Overlea, the goal is to revitalize the Taylor Avenue, Harford Road and Bel Air Road commercial corridors and develop mixed-use projects on underused properties. The community also wants to increase the number of trees in the area and improve residential neighborhoods by adopting rehabilitation and greening standards.
In Catonsville/Patapsco, the county wants to get Patapsco Valley certified as a state "heritage area" and improve bicycling and pedestrian paths to connect residents with parks. It also wants to encourage home ownership and rehabilitation of historic properties, and clean up trash in tributaries of the Patapsco River.
In Dundalk, the county wants to increase opportunities for heritage tourism, drawing on Battle Acre Park and North Point State Battlefield, both War of 1812 sites. Residents hope to continue housing rehabilitation efforts and link waterfront parks with a path.