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Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake on Wednesday announced a plan to reimagine trash-strewn lots or dilapidated, crumbling rowhomes into green space across city neighborhoods.

"The Green Network Plan" will provide a blueprint for some of the city's most blighted neighborhoods, to create new parks, community gardens, trails in once abandoned spaces, the mayor said during her weekly news conference at City Hall.

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"So many times people look at vacant property or blighted buildings and see a problem, and I am just so proud in my administration when we see something like that we see an opportunity, we see potential," Rawlings-Blake said.

City officials will hold the first public forum at 6 p.m. Wednesday night at Mother Seton Academy, at 2215 Greenmount Avenue, to meet with residents and discuss possible plans for future green spaces.

Planning director Thomas Stosur said the plan will include agencies across the city, and will "cut across so many agendas… We are talking about undoing concentrations of vacant properties, creating high-quality green spaces to beautify communities, treating stormwater runoff before it pollutes our streams and harbor, making disadvantaged communities cleaner and safer, and making more opportunities for economic development," Stosur said.

The city has hired a consultant team for $175,000. But Stosur said the project will also incorporate Project C.O.R.E. demolition funds. In January, Gov. Larry Hogan and the mayor announced the city-state partnership to tear down thousands of vacant buildings and replace them with new developments.

Rawlings-Blake said the city will use other funding sources to implement plans, such as city and state housing funds.

Officials said planning will take 9 to 12 months, but already opportunities have been identified across agencies.

Stosur pointed to Union Square as an example where green space could act as an anchor for future development, but other plans include "attractive stormwater amenities," or trails, instead of a park.

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