This July, a flash flood inundated Ellicott City and in a matter of minutes, the picturesque historic Main Street, was transformed into a disaster zone. Flood waters can rise and fall in a matter of minutes, but with this level of damage, recovery efforts may be required for years to come. We know that retaining the history and character of the City is a critical component of recovery, and will support the community in the complex process of rebuilding in a historic district.
To help Ellicott City’s property and business owners navigate the process of rebuilding their historic structures, Preservation Maryland has established a temporary Ellicott City Preservation Resource Center on Main Street to address both immediate and long-term historic preservation needs. We will also work with our partners at the Patapsco Heritage Greenway and Howard County Government to identify and implement innovative flood mitigation solutions for the historic buildings of Ellicott City.
In the weeks since Preservation Maryland opened our Preservation Resource Center in Ellicott City, we have been actively involved in providing on-the-ground direct technical assistance to dozens of property owners.
Marylanders responded immediately and generously to help historic Ellicott City recover from a devastating flood down Main Street. With the funds raised Preservation Maryland put boots-on-the-ground in the form of a Preservation Resource Center to provide direct, one-on-one technical assistance to the community’s property and business owners. Here is an interview with the Resource Center staff.
The road to recovery for Ellicott City has had many milestone moments along the way: emergency stabilization of storefronts, reopening Main Street for holiday shoppers, and progress building-by-building. Some of the smaller moments, too, like recently painted storefront murals, highlight the resilient and artistic spirit of Ellicott City.
Immediately after the flooding in Ellicott City, Preservation Maryland initiated a statewide fundraising effort and was one of the first non-profit organizations to provide boots-on-the-ground by opening the Ellicott City Preservation Resource Center. That Center has been open and staffed since August, here’s what we’ve contributed to the recovery.
The response by Preservation Maryland to the Ellicott City flood of 2016 was an opportunity to utilize our strengths – our understand of historic buildings – to help those impacted. It has also been one of the greatest challenges. In our “After Action Report,” we intend to provide a nationwide audience of organizations the opportunity to learn from our experiences.