The Architect-On-Call program considers requests for services from owners of commercial properties located within Baltimore County Commercial Revitalization Districts.
Visit MyNeighborhood to see if your business is located in a Commercial Revitalization District. In MyNeighborhood, select the "Economic" tab. The Commercial Revitalization Districts are highlighted in red.
The program offers up to 10 free hours of professional architectural design services for exterior improvements to their buildings. After an initial site visit and meeting, the architect prepares a digital rendering of the building with design recommendations and a rough-cost estimate. This service is free when improvements are certified as complete within six months.
General Criteria for the Architect-On-Call Program:
- Applications must be filed by the property owner
- The property must be located in one of Baltimore County’s 17 Commercial Revitalization Districts
Improvements Considered for the Architect-On-Call Program:
- Signage and Awnings
- Parking lot
- Exterior lighting
Improvements Not Considered for the Architect-On-Call Program:
- Mechanical and Systems
Sample before and after photos (PDF) from previous Architect-on-Call Program projects.
Design Review Panel
If your property is located within the Pikesville Commercial Revitalization District, improvements to the façade are subject to administrative review by the Design Review Panel (Department of Planning).
If your property is located within any of the following Commercial Revitalization Districts and you plan to include any new construction (additions to existing buildings or new structures) to your property, the project will require full review by the Design Review Panel (Department of Planning):
- Loch Raven
- Perry Hall
Learn more about the Design Review Panel Commercial Review requirements.
Architect-On-Call Program Process
Step 1. Apply
Submit completed Architect-On-Call Request for Services application to the program coordinator in the Baltimore County Department of Planning.
Step 2. Meet with Architect
AOC Program Coordinator reviews application and if it meets the program criteria, will set up a meeting with the property owner and Architect, usually within 14 days of application review. Meeting is held on-site with the property owner, Architect, AOC Program Coordinator, and area planner to discuss improvements to the property.
Step 3. Project Development
Architect develops preliminary renderings and preliminary Scope of Work outline. These documents are sent to the AOC Program Coordinator and then are, in turn, presented to the property owner for initial feedback.
Step 4. Project Revisions (if needed)
Based on any feedback from property owner or AOC Program Coordinator, the Architect revises recommendations and produces the final AOC proposal containing:
- Before and after renderings
- Scope of Work
- Cost Estimate
Step 5. Project Financing
Property owner may be eligible for a low or no-interest loan by applying to Baltimore County's Building Improvement Loan Program (BILP), which can be used for exterior improvements to properties within Commercial Revitalization Districts. For large projects, this loan could be combined with the Commercial Revitalization Tax Credit. The Tax Credit provides a five or 10-year real property tax credit if improvements increase the assessed property value by $100,000 or more.
Step 6. Construction
Property owner makes improvements based on the Architect’s recommendations within six months of receiving final AOC proposal.
Download an Architect-On-Call Application. (PDF)
Please submit your Architect-On-Call Request for Services application to the program coordinator by mail or email:
Amy Mantay, AOC Program Coordinator
Baltimore County Department of Planning
105 West Chesapeake Avenue, Suite 101
Towson, Maryland 21204