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City Sends Its Comments Supporting FBI Move to Greenbelt Site

At last night’s worksession, the City Council decided to send a letter to GSA with its comments on FBI’s possible move to the Greenbelt location. GSA is seeking public input as part of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process. Here is the draft text of that letter:

The City of College Park supports the Greenbelt alternative for the relocation of the FBI Headquarters and appreciates the opportunity to provide comments during the scoping phase of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process. While the Greenbelt Station site lies within the municipal boundaries of the City of Greenbelt, the City of College Park neighborhoods of Hollywood and Sunnyside adjoin the site to the west of the rail lines.

Due to their close proximity, the City is concerned about the cumulative impacts of the project on these neighborhoods. It is important to preserve their single-family residential character. Specific concerns that have been raised include groundwater drainage, flooding caused by new development, noise and light reflection into nearby homes, air quality and the protection of environmentally-sensitive areas. The Renard Development Company, LLC has been working with neighborhood residents for the last year and is expected to continue to do so.

Transportation and traffic issues need to be fully and adequately studied during the preparation of the Draft EIS. The need for beltway access improvements including new ramps into and out of the site has the potential for significant property impacts to College Park residents. The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) is examining the need to widen the beltway to accommodate these ramps and the Draft EIS should encompass the same study area. The City supports the preparation of a Transportation Management Plan (TMP) that takes full advantage of an on-site Metro station and utilization of GSA incentives and subsidies to encourage ridership.

Water resources, particularly the impact on wetlands and floodplains, should be given special attention. The preservation of the Indian Creek Stream Valley Park and Narragansett Run are extremely important to the City. All impacts to water quality and quantity should be very clearly stated.

Aesthetics and visual resources are also important. The view of the project from College Park’s low-rise neighborhoods should have an attractive appearance and all impacts resulting from building heights and materials should be measured.

Finally, the City asks that bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure in and surrounding the project area be addressed.

The City of College Park looks forward to reviewing and commenting on the Draft EIS and thanks the GSA for this comment period during the scoping process.

Sincerely,

Andrew M. Fellows
Mayor

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