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Cambridge Approves Milestone Plan for Pine Street Neighborhood Revitalization

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CAMBRIDGE, Md. - In Dorchester County, the City of Cambridge has reached a major milestone as it continues efforts to revamp its historic Pine Street area neighborhood.

And standing at the corner of Douglas and Pine Street, homeowner Lawrence Nathaniel James looked on with pride at his decades-old Cambridge home.

"I own this house and I've been living in this house," James said. "My sister and myself, we were born here."

It's a home slowly falling apart. James says he needs a new roof.

"I just want to be here to fix my mom's house," James said.

He's in luck - Cambridge City Council has finally approved it's Pine Street Revitalization Plan. In it is a list of recommendations to help homeowners in the area take back ownership of their homes and their neighborhood.

The plan suggests a mix of things, including land banking, homeowner education and affordability as well as a call for changes to nearby public spaces like Cornish Park.

The work is nothing new. Rhodana Fields of Habitat For Humanity has been working for years tearing down homes like the one right next door to James' home, and building new ones in their place.

"These are going to be a key opportunity," Fields said. "There'll probably be some demolition, some rehab, new construction for sure and a lot of owner-occupied home repair. Folks here just really need an opportunity to invest back in their homes."

Fields says this is the beginning of the project's several phases, which come every three years.

She adds the organization is also hosting an AARP-sponsored Homeowner Workshop on August 20 to help neighbors repair and finance their homes.

 

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