The Harford Road Partnership, known as HARP, has appointed a new executive director, Brent Flickinger, who started the full-time post last week.
Flickinger, 47, previously worked as a Baltimore County community planner, concentrating on the Northeast section. He also has worked as director of research and planning for the Archdiocese of Baltimore and as a community organizer in the Park Heights section of Northwest Baltimore.
He succeeds Marian Gillis as HARP's executive director, responsible for overseeing community and economic development in the stretch of Harford Road that begins at Argonne Drive and continues north for a mile and a half through Lauraville and Beverly Hills in Northeast Baltimore.
"My heart is in community development," said Flickinger. "I've missed being out on the streets, getting projects done."
Referring to Harford Road, a heavily traveled commuter route, as the "front door and visual image" of the area, Flickinger said his first priority will be to make it more pedestrian-friendly.
He will follow the guidelines of a master plan that was conceived for the Harford Road corridor two years ago, with the help of outside design advice and residents' views.
Reviving the Lauraville business district is another goal, Flickinger said. Inheriting a community with a new Safeway market and Video Americain store, Flickinger said he would like to see "smaller things, like coffee shops" open for business in the middle-class neighborhood.
"What wonderful names for neighborhoods," he said, recounting the surrounding enclaves of Arcadia, Mayfield, Moravia-Walther and Morgan Park.
Mark Aasterud, president of the HARP board, said that, of the job candidates, Flickinger had the best blend of professional experience and knowledge of the Northeast section.
Flickinger holds a master's degree in city and regional planning from Cornell University and is a native of Philadelphia. He lives in Mount Washington with his wife and 6-year-old daughter.
Last summer, Flickinger was one of the leading volunteer organizers of the Neighborhood Congress, a movement that seeks to improve city services to neighborhoods.
Pub Date: 10/11/99