November 2012 Development Update


The City of College Park has released its bi-monthly newsletter covering local development news.  Highlights from the latest edition include:

Domain at College Park

Mowatt Lane & Campus Drive

Status: Under Construction

Mixed-use residential development will have 256 multi-family units and 9,061 square feet of retail space. The first units are expected to be ready for move-in by summer 2013 with all units completed by summer 2014.  Four tenants are close to signing leases to occupy 5,181 SF of the ground floor retail space: Subway, Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt, Gateway Newstands, and Casey’s Coffee.

More details about the proposed retail businesses at the Domain can be found in this document.

Best Western

8419 Baltimore Avenue

Status: Under Construction

The Best Western project consists of a 50-room hotel with extended-stay suite facilities on the former site of the College Park Motel. Construction began late in 2011 and the estimated completion date is early 2013.

The Best Western hotel project was covered in this recent Diamondback article.

Maryland Book Exchange

7501 Baltimore Avenue

Status: Approved Detailed Site Plan

The property is 2.71 acres and is currently home to the Maryland Book Exchange. A new student housing development will add 287 units, with a maximum of 855 beds (originally proposed as 341 units and 1,010 beds). The ground floor will have 14,300 square feet of retail, including the relocated Maryland Book Exchange as the anchor.

The redevelopment of the Maryland Book Exchange received final approval from the Prince George’s County District Council earlier this month. The approval is a result of recent compromises with the City of College Park to reduce the height along Yale Avenue, among other items. The project now consists of a six-story building on Route 1 that steps down along College Avenue.

The next step will be the submission of construction drawings to obtain a building permit. Construction could begin in the first half of 2013.

This development will join The Enclave, Mazza Grandmarc, and The Varsity as the fourth privately built student housing project to open since 2010. Along with the University View I & II buildings, those three completed projects have brought 3,458 beds to the Route 1 Corridor since 2005. As of September 2012, the occupancy rate for these units was reported at 94% by the management teams.

Details about the final approval of the Maryland Book Exchange project can be found in this Gazette article from earlier this month.

Cafritz Property at Riverdale Park

Along the East Side of US Route 1 at College Park’s southern boundary

Status : Preliminary Subdivision Review

Envisioned as a multi-phase project on 37.55 acres of land in Riverdale Park, the development team requested rezoning the property from R-55 to Mixed-Use Town Center in 2011. A vote on the rezoning request was not taken until February 2012, where the County Planning Board approved by a 5-0 vote. After numerous public hearings in April and May, the County District Council voted 7-2 in favor of the rezoning application on July 9, 2012.

The developer’s next move was to submit a Preliminary Plan of Subdivision on July 27, which is scheduled to be heard by the County Planning Board on January 10, 2013.

The first phase proposes a Whole Foods Grocery store, over 100,000 square feet of retail and restaurants, and 22,000 square feet of office space. The second phase proposes 995 residential units and a 120-room hotel.

A recap of the District Council’s approval of the Cafritz Project back in July can be found in this Gazette article.

University of Maryland – East Campus

SE Corner of Baltimore Avenue and Paint Branch Parkway

Status : Planned Project

The University of Maryland plans to redevelop 38 acres of land at the intersection of Baltimore Avenue and Paint Branch Parkway. Phase 1 of the project will occupy approximately 8 acres and is slated to include a 266-key conference hotel with 18,000 square feet of retail and a 700-space garage, two graduate student housing towers, and an additional 70,000 square feet of retail. There are also plans for a light rail station as part of the proposed Purple Line development. The University of Maryland is looking to begin construction in 2013.

This recent Diamondback article has the latest update about East Campus.

A New Logo and Slogan for College Park

City’s marketing plan consultant idFive came to last week’s Council work session and presented four brand concept proposals and asked which, if any, of the those the City should pursue. idFive may solicit more opinions from other focus groups in the city to make a final decision.

For the past several months, idfive asked more than a hundred people in the course of its research. It was a diverse survey outreach effort that was as varied in form as it was in the types of people who responded to them. A sampling of respondents included current city residents, residents of nearby jurisdictions, City and County Councilmembers, neighborhood association representatives, State Senators and Delegates, local educators, small business owners, commercial developers, University of Maryland (UMD) faculty and staff, and many more.

Please see below the four brand concepts idFive presented to the Council.

A smart place to live
Small City, Big possibilities
Smart, Naturally
College Park, Maryland