MDP Unveils “A Better Maryland” Draft; Accepting Public Comments

Maryland Planning Blog article (2019-05-01) announced that the Maryland Department of Planning (MDP) has completed the draft of the new state development plan, A Better Maryland, and is taking public comments on the draft until Friday, May 17.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan previously signed Executive Order 01.01.2017.18, which repealed the former state development plan, PlanMaryland, and called for the creation of a new plan, A Better Maryland. The Executive Order requires that A Better Maryland include planning strategies the serve four goals: (1) enriching the lives of Marylanders; (2) using Smart Growth principles; (3) growing responsibly; and (4) protecting Maryland’s resources. Based on extensive public and local government feedback, the new plan focuses heavily on economic development and environmental protection.

The draft plan also takes a collaborative approach in helping local governments achieve their land use goals rather than forcing a “top down” approach where the State directs land use decisions. From the MDP blog article:

Planning has completed a draft of the new state development plan, A Better Maryland. The department would like to thank everyone who provided input, as it helped shape and formulate the draft plan. Our outreach process began in fall 2017 with meetings in all 23 counties and Baltimore City. Each day-long visit included meetings with elected officials, staff and a general public meeting. Staff met with every jurisdiction for a second round of meetings in fall 2018 and have been working on the draft plan for the past several months. You can check out notes from both round of public outreach on the project’s input page.

The final plan is due to Governor Hogan by July 1, 2019. Planning is asking for public assistance one more time by reading the draft plan and providing any final comments.  Please share this with others as we value all input. …

Comments should be provided by Friday, May 17,  by emailing them to Joe Griffiths at If you prefer to discuss your comments by phone, please call either Joe Griffiths  at (410) 767-4553, Chuck Boyd at (410) 767-1401 or Pat Keller (410) 767-0901.

MACo will be submitting its own comments on A Better Maryland. Counties are encouraged to share their comments or thoughts on the draft with MACo Legal and Policy Counsel Les Knapp at or 410.269.0043.

Useful Links

A Better Maryland (2019-04-18 Draft)

A Better Maryland Webpage

Executive Order 01.01.2017.18 (Rescinds PlanMaryland and creates A Better Maryland)

Prior Conduit Street Coverage of A Better Maryland