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Berlin, MD at AGU Fall Meeting

Laura Allen attended AGU’s 2016 Fall Meeting in San Francisco, CA to present a poster highlighting recent accomplishments and next steps for the Berlin TEX project. Click here to download her presentation!


Berlin, Maryland – How One Small City is Using Science to Change its World


fm16thumbnailSmall cities are uniquely challenged to mitigate environmental issues in their communities because they usually lack the financial resources and technical expertise to address them.

The Town of Berlin, population 4,500, recently purchased approximately 60 acres of private property located at 9943 Old Ocean City Boulevard. The property was previously owned by Tyson Chicken, Inc. and contains a chicken processing plant which has not been in use for over 10 years. Historically the plant emitted significant odors which limited the Town’s ability to diversify its economic base. The plant closure provided an opportunity to convert the property to another use, but the downturn in the economy delayed that change.

The Town intends to establish recreation oriented uses on the property with the following goals in mind:

  1. Create a common ground for the people of Berlin that will unite various neighborhoods.
  2. Create synergy between ecological sustainability and community resilience
  3. Upgrade the ponds on the property to make them the design focal point


Through the Thriving Earth Exchange, the Town of Berlin connected with Dr. Ellen Silbergeld to resolve the question of how to remediate the ponds. Dr. Silbergeld is trained as an environmental engineer and public health researcher, with substantial experience in environmental issues in the poultry industry.
This case study will show how one small city is working with a volunteer scientist to convert a blighted piece of property into a multi-use public space for the benefit of its residents and guests.



mgoodwin editor

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