News from the DNR Office of Communications

Governor O’Malley Announces BPW Approval Of Land Acquisition And Recreational Projects In Eight Counties

Annapolis, Md. (September 16, 2009) – Governor Martin O’Malley today announced Board of Public Works approval of land acquisition and recreational projects in Baltimore, Carroll, Cecil, Dorchester, Frederick, Harford, Wicomico and Worcester Counties through Program Open Space.

"These are challenging times for our families and our state, but working together with our local partners, we are continuing to invest in a more sustainable future for our children, creating critical new opportunities for children to have increased access to our natural environment, the outdoors, safer play areas and open spaces,” said Governor O’Malley.

Today the Board of Public Works approved the following local-side Program Open Space projects:

  • Baltimore County will receive $1.1 million to acquire 48.83 additional acres for the existing 79.7-acre Reisterstown Regional Park, which will provide the opportunity to develop trails and other passive forms of recreation that will compliment the Park’s athletic fields and indoor sports facility.

"We are grateful for Governor O'Malley's support for this important park project that will enhance our citizens' quality of life and support active lifestyles while also preserving valuable open space," said Baltimore County Executive Jim Smith.

  • Carroll County will receive:
    • $100,000 to renovate the existing playground at Jones Park in Sykesville to improve park safety and accessibility, and
    • $26,248 to reconstruct two tennis courts and one basketball court at Melvin Miller Park in Hampstead.
  • Cecil County will receive $33,000 to develop a playground at the Chesapeake City Community Park to provide area residents with playground facilities for 2 to 12 year old children.
  • Dorchester County will receive $40,000 to resurface the existing tennis courts and parking lot on Creamery Rd. in East New Market to improve the safety and function of the court.
  • Frederick County will receive $7,404 to install lighting for the existing playground, pavilion, gazebo and parking lot at New Market Community Park.
  • Harford County will receive:
    • $124,000 to acquire two parcels totaling 27.99 acres with frontage on MD-23 adjacent to the Rural Village of Jarrettsville. The site will be used for development of an indoor recreation facility with passive parkland, and is one-quarter of a mile from the Jarrettsville Recreation Complex and Jarrettsville Elementary School.
    • $41,250 to construct a new multipurpose court in the area of an existing baseball diamond on the grounds of Darlington Elementary School. The multipurpose court willl be an all weather surface of 50 feet by 60 feet for basketball and other outdoor games for both students and community residents.
  • Wicomico County will receive $35,000 to develop a playground in the center of government housing in Fruitland to provide a more accessible play area for neighborhood children.
  • Worcester County will receive $80,000 to replace the existing playground at North Surf Park with a new playground aimed at the 5 to 12 year old age group that meets Consumer Product Safety Commission guidelines for commercial playgrounds and ADA accessibility standards.

Since 2007, Governor O'Malley and the BPW preserved more than 24,323 acres of natural areas for public recreation and watershed and wildlife protection across Maryland. Since 1969, Program Open Space has provided funding for acquisition of 345,053 acres for open space and recreation areas. Most Maryland residents live within 15 minutes of an open space or recreational area funded Program Open Space.

The three-member Board of Public Works is comprised of Governor O’Malley (chair), Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot. The BPW is authorized by the General Assembly to approve major construction and consultant contracts, equipment purchases, property transactions and other procurement actions.

   September 16, 2009

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 461,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries, and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic, and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at