PreserveCast Ep. 86: Saving Historic Ellicott City with Mary Catherine Cochran

September 10, 2018

Ellicott City, Maryland is a place that exudes authenticity. It has been flooded repeatedly, traipsed over by Civil War soldiers, and stained by locomotive smoke. Unfortunately, the most recent floods have resulted in local officials calling to demolish large portions of the historic district, a move that could set a terrible precedent here in Maryland and beyond.

Today’s guest, Mary Catherine Cochran is working to stop that plan and to find a way to balance life, history, and safety. As a Howard County native and lifelong preservationist, Mary Catherine co-founded Preservation Howard County and has served as the executive director of the Patapsco Heritage Greenway. In recognition of her work, she was inducted into the Howard County Women's Hall of Fame in 2017.

As a tireless defender of Ellicott City, Mary Catherine is working in partnership with a grassroots collective of supporters and larger organizations like Preservation Maryland to defeat a new proposal that would demolish large portions of this historic town.

In this episode, Nick and Mary discuss:

  • the importance of making science-based decisions to mitigate flooding in an age of climate change
  • ways to engage a community that has been traumatized with the physical and the financial losses of their businesses
  • the challenges associated with public acquisition of private businesses located in historic buildings 
  • how to contact the Howard County Council to voice your opinion on saving this community

Grab your hard hats and get to work with Nick and Mary on this week's episode of PreserveCast!

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