This month’s general membership meeting will be on Tuesday, September 16th, 7:30pm at The Belvedere. 

 

Our focus will be to meet the candidates for the District 11 seat vacated by Bill Cole.  In addition, Bikemore will be present to provide an update on the planned bicycle lanes through Mt. Vernon.

 

Liquor licenses

                

There is an important liquor license enhancement request for the formerly Five Seasons Restaurant, now known as Hot Spots, for a request to remain open after 2am to serve breakfast until 6am, 7 days a week.  Hot Spots is located in the Guilford Avenue Shopping Center, at Guilford and Madison.  Approval of the request could be problematic for the immediate residents in the community.  Please attend and voice your opinion on the issue.  The hearing is scheduled for this Thursday, September 18th, on the 11am docket at City Hall, Rm 215.


There was an application for a new Class B restaurant license at 1224 N Charles Street, that also included requests for Outdoor Table Service and Off-Premise Catering.  In speaking with the applicant, his intention is to operate the restaurant until approximately 10pm during the week, possibly somewhat later on the weekends.  He also indicated that he was not interested in  serving alcohol alone after the above hours when the kitchen will typically close.  The application was approved as MVBA did not object to the application based on the intent of the applicant.  There was no application for live entertainment.

 

Tree Fund Fundraiser at City Café

Our thanks to Gino Cardinale and the Staff of City Café for hosting the very successful Tree Fundraiser in the front bar of City Café on September 10, from 6-9pm.  Gino generously donated 50% of the bar receipts during event, whose proceeds will be used to pay for gator bags, mulch, and compost needed for newly planted trees in the neighborhood.

             

You may have noticed stenciled green colored tree symbols with “MVBA Trees”  in the center, located directly on the sidewalk. This is where tree pits will be created to plant additional trees.  Plans are

in place to create up to 30 new tree pits for additional trees.  If you would like to donate to the Tree Fund, please visit http://www.mvba.org/Tree-Donations       

 

Fall Tree Planting & Maintenance Events - Save the Dates!             

Our fall 2014 tree planting and maintenance event dates are set. We'll be working on Saturday, October 4th and Saturday, October 25th. Meet-up locations for both events are still TBD, and we'll be working from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. We hope you will join us, so save the dates!

 

Meet the Candidates

At the upcoming General Membership meeting, MVBA has invited all of the candidates to date that have formally announced their intentions as a replacement for Bill Cole, who vacated his City Council seat for District 11 at the end of August.


A committee that is comprised of 11th District residents and registered voters, community leaders, business owners and two members of the City Council from neighboring districts will determine which candidate will be appointed to the vacant seat.  Pursuant to Rule 5-11, the committee will convene at a public hearing on Tuesday, September 23, at 6 p.m. at Baltimore City Hall's Council Chambers, to conduct public interviews, as required by law, of individuals interested in filling the 11th District Council vacancy. The public hearing will air live on Charm TV's cable channel 25.

 

Bicycle Lanes

Bikemore, a group leading an effort to provide significant bike lanes on City Streets, especially through Mount Vernon on Maryland Avenue and Madison Street, will be present at the General Membership meeting to provide an update on the current plans and solicit input from the community.  MVBA

has learned that in the process, anywhere from 150-300 parking spaces on Maryland Avenue and Madison Street could be lost to the planned lanes, raising concerns about the current design.  Lack of sufficient community input has also been a concern.

 

Graffitti Artist Arrested and Convicted

                 The culmination of a lengthy Graffiti investigation into the rash of graffiti markings & tags found on various properties and businesses located in the Mt. Vernon, Midtown - Belvedere, Station North and Central District business and residential communities, conducted by the Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office and the BCPD, resulted in the arrest and trial of the graffiti artist. The Defendant pled Guilty to the Top Count of MDP Scheme + $1000 and received 3 yrs. to the Division of Corrections suspending all but 60 days incarceration beginning August 26th, 2014 w/ 3 yrs. of Supervised Probation upon release including drug / alcohol / mental health screening and treatment as directed. Additionally, the Defendant will have to complete 300 hours of community service w/ the Graffiti Abatement Unit.


MVBA is hoping that this landmark sentence sets a clear precedent for any future offenders and that the days of wrist slapping are over. Our thanks to the Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office and the BCPD (special recognition to Detective David Jones and P/O Jill Beauregard).

 

City Launches New Parking Rules to Discourage Theft of Disability Placards
July 24th marked the official kickoff of Project SPACE, a program requiring all drivers who utilize on-street parking in the downtown business district to pay the parking meter-even if a disability placard or tag is displayed. Project SPACE aims to eliminate theft and abuse of disability placards, create more accessible parking for people with disabilities, and increase the general availability of on-street parking. For more information on Project SPACE, visit www.MoreSpace4All.com.

 

Nouveau Contemporary Goods Signs Lease, Plans to Return to Mount Vernon.

Nouveau Contemporary Goods, Baltimore's premier destination for modern home furnishings, has announced that it is moving from Belvedere Square back to the City's historic Mount Vernon neighborhood. Nouveau co-owners Steve Appel and Lee Whitehead have leased 2,300 square feet at 10 West Eager Street (next to City Café) and plan to reopen the store in late October 2014.


According to Appel, the move represents a return to Nouveau's "roots" - its first official home at 519 North Charles Street, where it became the City's go-to place for home décor. "We are excited to move back downtown because of all the luxury rental apartments that have opened up. It's also really cool to see some of the familiar faces from when we were there before. It feels like coming home, especially since both Lee and I are already downtown residents."


Adds Appel: "We have always identified ourselves with Mount Vernon, its history, its culture, and its unique Baltimore charm. With the trend toward urban living, it makes perfect sense for us to be in the heart of the City near our current and our future customers."

 

Center Stage Annual Open House             

On September 27th from 10am-2pm at Center Stage, we'll open our doors for our annual open house, Backstage @ Center Stage! This FREE event is a great opportunity to show your appreciation for the arts, dive into our exciting theatrical season, and have a fun-filled afternoon! Bring the family and get a behind-the-scenes look at how theater is made, dress up in some costumes from past productions, check out a workshop in stage combat or stage makeup, interact with local artists, face painters, and much more!

 

Star-Spangled Spectacular,  September 10-September 16.

                

When you think of Baltimore as the birthplace of the Star-Spangled Banner, the Star Fort at Fort McHenry may come to mind. Or, the enormous flag Mary Pickersgill sewed -- her home is now the Star-Spangled Banner Flag House. Or perhaps, the Inner Harbor's deep waters, and our speedy Clipper Ships, which wrought havoc on the British. But did you know that Mount Vernon played a pivotal role in Baltimore's War of 1812 history, too?
                

It was in Mount Vernon that the first monument commemorating the War of 1812 was constructed: The Battle Monument. The Monument paid tribute to all thirty-nine Baltimoreans

who died in the Battle of Baltimore. It is the official emblem of the City of Baltimore, and the image of the Battle Monument is seen everywhere, on City buildings, signs and printed materials, park benches and even police badges.
                

Back in 1812-era Baltimore, Mount Vernon was part of Revolutionary War hero John Eager Howard's vast "Belvidere" estate. It was an untamed land, known as "Howard's Woods." But it was in this area that the country's first monument to George Washington was built. Together with the Battle Monument, the Washington Monument helped earn Baltimore the nickname, "The Monumental City."


Francis Scott Key, who penned the immortal words to our National Anthem, actually died in 1843 in a home across the street from Mount Vernon Place. Today it's the site of the Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church

 

City Endorses Insurance Program for Sewer Lines

Just as much of the public water and sewer lines in the City are old and at or nearing the end of their useful lives, the lines on private property are also subject to failure.  Optional service plans now available through HomeServe USA, who offer low-cost protection against broken or impaired lines, which can cost thousands of dollars to fix.


The City will not generate any revenue through its partnership with HomeServe. The City will not offer billing services for the company, and is not paying for HomeServe's ongoing marketing campaign.


But Baltimore City Department of Public Works Director Rudolph S. Chow, P.E., warned City homeowners that only HomeServe USA has the endorsement of Baltimore City to provide emergency repair coverage of their water and sewer service lines. If you receive a solicitation that does not contain the City seal and identifies a company other than HomeServe USA, it is not supported or endorsed by the City.


"We learned this afternoon that at least one company is representing itself as having been endorsed by the City to offer service plans," said Mr. Chow. "After an extensive, nationwide search, the City entered into a partnership with HomeServe USA - and only HomeServe USA - to offer the optional residential service plans for water and sewer service lines.  For more information, visit http://www.homeserveusa.com/

 

 Water meter upgrades for Baltimore City, County customers

August 5, 2014 (Baltimore, MD) - Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Department of Public Works (DPW) Director Rudolph S. Chow, P.E., announced today the automated water meter upgrade program, known as BaltiMeter, will begin the first week of September with installations in the City’s Mount Vernon and Pimlico neighborhoods.


 Automated meters will transmit precise information on water usage to collectors, which will then send the data to a central billing office. This will eliminate the need for crews to manually read each meter.


All customers, including those in the first phase of the installations, will be notified in advance of work commencing on water meters in their area. The work will be done by Itron, Inc., a recognized leader in the water industry.

Letters will be mailed to both the property address and the billing address (if they are different). These notifications will explain

what the customer can expect as the water meter upgrades commence. If additional coordination is required with a customer, the correspondence from Baltimore City DPW will indicate what is needed from the customer.

 

Baltimore Book Festival

                 September 26-28, Inner Harbor. The mid-Atlantic's premier celebration of the literary arts features more than 200 celebrity and local authors, readings, workshops, children’s activities, panel discussions, cookbook demonstrations, more than 100 exhibitors and booksellers, live music, food and more. www.baltimorebookfestival.org

 

Last RPP Pick-up Session

The last of the three pick-up sessions for residential parking permits will take place on Tuesday, September 23, from 5:30pm to 8pm at the offices of the Midtown Community Benefits District, 1221 N Calvert St.  Pick-up sessions are for renewals only that have been paid for in advance.  No applications for new permits can be taken.  Be sure to bring appropriate documentation with you, especially, Drivers License and Vehicle Registration. For more information, call the Parking Authority at 443-573-2800.

 

MVBA Elections

This year’s annual election involves filling one Director’s seat on the board of directors.  If you are interested in participating on MVBA’s board of directors, please forward your name and contact information to membership@mvba.org.





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Mt. Vernon Belvedere Association

1 East Chase Street #2

Baltimore, Md 21202

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