The Downtown Denton Main Street program is working hard to foster civic pride and promote economic vitality in our town. Some projects currently in the works include restoration of the Denton Community Demonstration Garden, walkability in the downtown district with new signage to direct visitors and the community to local shops.

Community Safety Works-Business District Improvements

Project has begun

What's the Plan & What's the Outcome?
Downtown Denton Main Street  is working with the Town of Denton using grant money from Department of Housing and Community Development to improve the 200 block of Market Street.  
The following is a list of items to complete: 1) Remove pavers in sections on the north side of the 200 block of Market Street and prep for tree removal, install new electrical infrastructure underground to replace overhead, install and update gutter pipes, grade walkway away from buildings, install new pavers, install new trees; with tree wells and a walkable surface.  
DDMS believes that this project is extremely important to the future of the Main Street district.  It will resolve the following issues: 1) Provide a safe smooth walking surface to prevent falls and tripping. 2) Will provide enough width and proper surface for wheelchairs and people with disabilities. 3) Will provide a clear "line of sight" by removing bulky over sized trees and branches. 4) This will help also for the removal of obstructions to the surveillance cameras already installed and the new planned cameras.  5) This will provide more accessibility to fire departments approach to second story and roof in cases of fire. 6) It removes a number of obstacles for EMS and police for gurneys and emergency responses 7) Provides more visibility of business store fronts which helps for crime prevention, but also marketing of the business. 8)New, unobstructed lighting will create safer walking areas at night for shoppers and residents. 9) Festival tree lighting will create an "upbeat" feel in the Main Street district.

Downtown Denton Main Street Projects

Painted Electric Panels

Volunteers came together to paint the electric boxes along Market Street in downtown Denton. We would like to thank the local businesses who contributed their time and talents to beautifying the downtown area.

Artsway at Denton

The Denton Development Corporation, a nonprofit entity, was established in 1998 to facilitate, manage, and execute redevelopment efforts targeting vacant and/or underutilized buildings in the Central Business District.

In 2005, spearheaded by the DDC, the Town of Denton received designation as an Arts & Entertainment (A&E) District. An A&E District is a well-recognized, labeled, mixed-use are of a city in which a high concentration of arts and cultural facilitates serve as the anchor attraction.

The State of Maryland was the first state in the country to sponsor Arts and Entertainment Districts as a way to stimulate the economy and improve quality of life.

This legislation enables local jurisdictions, municipalities, counties, or a combination thereof, to apply for state designation for an Arts and Entertainment Districts within their boundaries and offer tax incentives as provided by law.

Denton Development Corporation Projects

The Benefits Offered to Selected Districts include:

  • Property tax credits for new construction or renovation of certain buildings that create live-work space for artists and/or space for arts and entertainment enterprises
  • Income tax subtraction modification for income derived from artist work sold by “qualifying residing artists”
  • Exemption from the Admissions and Amusement tax levied by an “arts and entertainment enterprise” or “qualifying residing artist” in a district.

As one of Maryland’s designated Districts, the Denton Arts & Entertainment District was developed as an economic revitalization strategy to accomplish the following outcomes:

  • Adaptive mixed use redevelopment of blighted or vacant properties
  • Expansion of the Market Street Retail/Shop District to include the A & E District
  • Increase in street level activity (shops, art galleries, studios, arts venues)
  • Creation of new street level retail shops and/or artist galleries
  • Relocation of historic structures with the Fourth Street project area

The Plan

Fourth Street (between Gay and Market Streets), located within Denton’s Arts & Entertainment, Central Business and Historic Districts, was in substandard physical condition and the underutilized business capacity detracted from attractiveness and momentum of the downtown business district.

The Fourth Street Redevelopment Project was created through a partnership between Denton Development Corporation and the Town of Denton with vision that this street will become the ArtsWay at Denton, a center of cultural activity for the Town’s entire A&E district.

The redevelopment of the Fourth Street block of the A&E District has evolved into a collaborative effort between the DDC, the Town, the Caroline County Council of Arts, the Downtown Denton Main Street Program, as well as other community members. Primarily through grant funds, structures have been purchased within the Denton Artsway and rehabilitation phase is well underway.

Pedestrian Pathways

A $50,000 grant was secured from the Community Legacy program to implement a pedestrian pathways within the Fourth Street Redevelopment project area. Components of the project include lighting, signage, pathways, access to artisan buildings, public art, and public outdoor venue space. The pathways provides inviting pedestrian walkways throughout the Fourth Street Redevelopment area, fostering connectivity between several targeted structures representing Denton’s oldest and most significant examples of Federal and Victorian styles of architecture.

The pathways provide a welcoming infrastructure to encourage patronage of the developing Arts and Entertainment District. General plans for the Fourth Street streetscape were completed in 2005. With assistance from a 2009 Maryland State Arts Council grant, these plans were further refined. Initial elements of the project’s implementation have begun with the Town of Denton planting three Zelkova Serrata “Musashino” trees, (funded by the Forrest Conservation Fund) and the Caroline County Department of Correction’s work release program excavating the first pathway. A community mosaic art sculpture has been erected at one end of the Fourth Street area. The first completed Fourth Street structure, the Foundry, has also installed a large scale public art project.

Thanks to a grant from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, the flower towers (pictured above) in the Community Demonstration Garden were installed in May, 2019.

Old Schoolhouse Property Redevelopment


The purpose of this project was to acquire and renovate the building located at 512 Franklin Street, known as the “Old Schoolhouse” in Denton, Maryland. This building had been purchased privately in 1987 for use as an office building. The main floor area had been renovated, but was never leased. The building had remained vacant for 14 years and was subjected to vandalism and deterioration.

The Denton Development Corporation completed a conceptual plan for the property and identified environmental hazards. The Denton Development Corporation worked with the Town to acquire and renovate the building. The rehabilitated structure will be managed by the Caroline County Public School System to promote start-up businesses and serve as a regional culinary training facility leased to a new non-profit culinary institute (the Chesapeake Culinary School) serving the Mid-Shore region.

For more information please contact Donald Mulrine, project manager at 410-479-2050.

The Wharves at Choptank Crossing

The Wharves at Choptank Crossing reconnects the historic working riverfront of West Denton with the Town of Denton’s riverfront on the east side. Historically, the two sides of the river were linked by maritime trade and the distribution of goods from the Denton wharves. Later, with the decline of river freight (driven by the emergence of automobiles and trucks) and the replacement of the low profile bascule bridge with a high level bridge, the intimate, maritime roots that connected Denton with West Denton were severed.

The Wharves at Choptank Crossing project links the riverfronts again, providing a unique tourism destination for motorists and boaters, enhancing historic preservation and telling the stories of the many historic resources nearby. The project encompasses nearly 1,000 feet of Choptank riverfront including over 30 acres, two National Register Sites, an adjacent National Register Historic District, three National Register Vessels and access to the region’s most extensive water trail- The Choptank & Tuckahoe Rivers Trail.

The existing improvements to the east side riverfront include expanded boat ramp facilities, picnic areas, restroom facilities and parking for recreational boaters. 

The Wharves at Choptank Crossing substantially enhances the facilities of Crouse Park for the residents of the Town of Denton and the surrounding area, and is also serve as a focal point for attracting visitors from out of the area, supporting the efforts of the Main Street Program and the 4th Street Arts and Entertainment District to augment the business climate of the town.

The project is funded by a variety of state and federal grants, managed on behalf of the town and Caroline County by the Denton Development Corporation.

The visitor center welcomes travelers to Caroline County and should be your first stop to discovering what Caroline County has to offer. The visitor center offers a great place for travelers to stop, stretch their legs, find information on Caroline County and its towns, and take in the views of the Choptank River. We offer free parking, bus parking, and clean restroom facilities. Need a location to hold a meeting or event? Contact us to find out more 410-479-0825 or 410-479-2050.

For more information about the Wharves project, contact Donald Mulrine at 410-479-2050.