City / County Digest

CITY / COUNTY DIGEST

May 01, 2007

UAE president's family makes `significant' gift to Johns Hopkins

The new cardiovascular and critical care tower under construction at the Johns Hopkins medical campus in East Baltimore has received a "significant" financial boost from the family of the president of the United Arab Emirates, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Hopkins spokeswoman Joann Rodgers said yesterday that, at the family's request, the size of the gift could not be disclosed, but it was described yesterday in a Hopkins news release as "transformational."

The 12-story building -- one of a pair -- will be named for the sheikh's father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The ruler of Abu Dhabi, the largest of the UAE's seven emirates. He died in 2004.

Rodgers would not say whether the late sheikh, or anyone in his family had been treated at Hopkins. Part of the gift will be used for cardiovascular research. The hospital hopes to complete construction of the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cardiovascular and Critical Care Tower in 2010.

Hopkins has a close relationship with the UAE. Last year, Johns Hopkins Medicine began managing health care systems in Abu Dhabi.

Hopkins is also working to improve medical education there. Faculty from Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health are developing a public health doctoral program for the UAE and advising the emirates' preventive health care programs.

The UAE, a country slightly smaller than Maine, is on the southern shore of Persian Gulf and bordered by Oman and Saudi Arabia. It has a population of 4.4 million.

Baltimore

: BCCC

Festivals to mark 60th anniversary

Baltimore City Community College plans three community festivals this week as part of its 60th anniversary celebration. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today, the college's Literary Festival will include activities for parents and children -- including book signings, panel discussions, children's book readings, writing workshops and other entertainment. An Arts Festival is set for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. tomorrow that will feature a variety of students and professional artists. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, an International Festival will spotlight exhibits, food, artifacts and flags from the more than 50 nationalities of students who attend the college. All three days are free and open to the public. They will take place outdoors on the college's Liberty campus, 2901 Liberty Heights Ave. Information: the college's Institutional Advancement Office at 410-986- 5507.

School system

Forums scheduled on safety plan

The Baltimore school system will host two public forums this week to gather input on its proposed school safety plan.

The forums will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. tomorrow and Thursday. Tomorrow's forum will be held in the first-floor boardroom at school system headquarters, 200 E. North Ave. Thursday's forum will be held in the library on the Walbrook high school campus, 2000 Edgewood St.

A draft of the plan, compiled by more than 60 educators and community leaders over the course of several months, was presented to the school board March 27. It addresses areas affecting school climate, including curriculum, parent involvement and youth leadership.

The school board is scheduled to adopt a final version of the plan this month.

Sara Neufeld

Carroll County

: Eldersburg

Smoldering cigarette blamed in house fire

The state fire marshal's office has determined that a smoldering cigarette was the cause of a three-alarm fire that heavily damaged four townhouses in Eldersburg Wednesday afternoon, authorities said yesterday. Investigators determined that the fire started on the rear deck of 1104 Pennywort Circle and spread to houses 1102 and 1106. The end unit, 1100, suffered smoke damage. The fire caused an estimated $500,000 in damage and displaced five adults and two children.

Ellie Baublitz

Westminster

Plane skids off airport runway

A small aircraft skidded off the runway at the Carroll County Regional Airport in Westminster on Sunday afternoon, shutting down the airport for several hours, county officials said.

The single-engine Piper Dakota, with only the pilot on board, went off the runway as it attempted to land about 12:30 p.m. No one was injured, and the airport reopened less than four hours later, officials said.

Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration were investigating the accident yesterday morning, according to Cindy Parr, county chief of administrative services.

Laura McCandlish

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