On February 1, 2010 the residents of Columbia, Md., became a step closer to having a redeveloped, revitalized downtown when the Howard County Council unanimously approved the 30-year master plan that will bring as much as 13 million square feet of retail, commercial, residential, hotel and cultural development to Columbia's downtown core. This legislation addresses every aspect of community life in Downtown Columbia, including diverse housing choices, bold environmental measures, physical connections that will make us less automobile dependent, exciting arts and cultural amenities, office space for new businesses, and preservation of its history along with the plans for its future.
Efforts to establish a Cultural Master Plan began in the fall of 2010. An Advisory Committee was established to guide the development of the Cultural Master Plan and recommend the framework for the Downtown Arts and Cultural Commission.
In November, the proposed new Downtown-wide Design Guidelines along with an amendment to the Howard County Sign Code were introduced before the County Council. Following two public hearings and multiple work sessions, the Howard County Council unanimously passed the downtown design guidelines and downtown sign code on March 7, 2011
View Downtown-wide Design Guidelines - Council Resolution 138
View Sign Guidelines - Council Bill 56