The health of Baltimore Harbor starts with the health of our neighborhoods.

In 2013, we began working in upstream neighborhoods on issues related to trash and litter. Because pollution in the Baltimore Harbor comes from neighborhood runoff which drains directly into our streams and harbor, clean-up requires projects that improve the water both at the harbor and in these neighborhoods.

Trash and other pollutants can be reduced by increasing awareness, outreach and education, providing tools, and working to increase neighborhood pride and build social fabric.

The Alley Makeover is a holistic approach to community building and place-making centered around one issue: trash.  In partnership with the Baltimore Clean Corps program, we offer Alley Makeover Projects in East Baltimore neighborhoods.

Working through community associations and with resident leaders, the dirtiest alleys are identified to receive increased attention from city agencies and local non-profits.

With our Alley Makeover work, we want to make big improvements in the cleanliness of target neighborhoods and to keep trash out of the city’s storm drains. We will accomplish this by making systematic changes in city services and neighborhood projects that promote behavior change.

To learn more about our neighborhood work, read the monthly Healthy Harbor Pipeline Newsletter:

October 2016  –  November 2016  –  December 2016



Establish a baseline of neighborhood cleanliness and create metrics to be tracked by identifying and engaging resident leaders.


Listen to concerns from residents and create processes that allow citizens, government, and non-profits to partner and implement projects.


Put creative projects identified through this process into action, and conduct follow-up assessments to determine their success.


Track our progress and elevate lessons learned to inform city policies related to trash and litter.