As winter approaching us, County’s Office of Emergency Management in collaboration with the Prince George’s County Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission has declared the following local warming centers.
The County is encouraging residents without heat, who and are in need of relief from the cold temperatures, to utilize one of the. Residents are encouraged to call each facility to obtain hours of operation.
Note: These sites are not equipped to serve as shelters.
Bowie Community Center– 3209 Stonybrook Drive, Bowie, MD 20715
Camp Springs Senior Center– 6420 Allentown Road, Camp Springs, MD 20748
JE Howard Community Center– 4400 Shell Street, Capitol Heights, MD 20743
Kentland Community Center– 2413 Pinebrook Avenue, Landover, MD 20785
Langley Park Community Center– 1500 Merrimac Drive, Hyattsville, MD 20783
Laurel Beltsville Senior Activity Center– 7120 Contee Road, Laurel, MD 20707
Palmer Park Community Center– 7720 Barlowe Road, Landover, MD 20785
Peppermill Community Center– 610 Hill Road, Landover, MD 20785
Rollingcrest- Chillum Community Center– 6120 Sargent Road. Chillum, MD 20782
Southern Regional Technology and Recreation Complex– 7007 Bock Road, Fort Washington, MD 20744
Suitland Community Center– 5600 Regency Lane, Forestville, MD 20747
Temple Hills Community Center– 5300 Temple Hills Road, Temple Hills, MD 20748
In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, all City offices will close at 3:00pm on Wednesday, November 23 and remain closed on Thursday, November 24 and Friday, November 25.
There will be no special trash or brush collections this week.
Additionally, there will be no Council meeting next week. The Council meeting will resume in the following week, on Tuesday, December 6.
The City of College Park, with One Warm Coat, a national non-profit organization, has begun our annual One Warm Coat Drive. Help fellow College Park residents in need by donating your clean, gently-used warm coats, hats and gloves during the City’s annual warm coat drive. All donated coats will be distributed by the Department of Youth and Family Services throughout the College Park area to local children and adults in need.
Last year we collected over 60 coats and are hoping to beat that number this year!
Donations can placed into designated collection boxes during business hours at the following locations:
City Hall, 4500 Knox Road
Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Department of Public Works, 9217 51st Avenue
Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Youth and Family Services, 4912 Nantucket Road
Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Department of Public Services, 4601A Calvert Road
Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
As you recall, a few months ago, we ran a survey in the community aboutthe idea of building a community garden in north College Park. Among the top choices, many of the survey responders liked the idea of having the proposed community garden next to the dry cleaner at the corner of Rhode Island Avenue and Edgewood Road, at 9900 Rhode Island Avenue.
Accordingly, we reached out to the property owner who appears willing to allow a garden to be created in that area. Potentially, the owner may also allow gardeners to make use of a water spigot on the building if the City will provide reimbursement for garden water usage costs.
According to staff, garden plots could be created in the flat, grassy area behind the building. Approximately 15-20 plots could fit using the same type of 4’ x 10’ raised bed garden plots created for the Old Town community garden. For this garden, staff proposes connecting three plots together, separated into 5 rows and providing 3’ walkways between them to comfortably fit 15 shade-free plots on that site. The site could possibly accommodate up to 20 plots while maintaining 3’ wide walkways and avoiding deeply-shaded areas.
Staff and the City City Attorney will need to develop a MOU for the property owner since this site is private property. Funding ($ 2640 ) could potentially come from the City’s Sustainability Initiatives CIP.
The Council will have a preliminary discussion about the proposed garden at tomorrow’s Council worksession.
Thanks everyone who came out to yesterday’s community cleanup event. We had a great turn out. Around 50 community members joined us. We started at the Hollywood tot lot and covered many streets between and on Rt1, Edgewood Rd, Rhode Island Ave and Indian Lane. Also, our sincere thanks to the North College Park Civic Association and the Committee for a Better environment and City’s Public Works staff for supporting the event.
Fresh produce, local vendors, great food – this is the last weekend to visit our two Farmers Markets until they reopen in April! Come to our Hollywood Farmers Market by REI Saturday from 9am-1pm and our Downtown Farmers Market by City Hall Sunday from 10am-2pm!
The Hollywood Farmers Market may have additional markets on December 3rd, 10th and 17th but that will be based on the temperatures.
A friendly reminder about tomorrow’s Community Cleanup event. We’ll meet at the Hollywood tot lot, which is a small park located at the corner of Hollywood Rd and 48th Pl. We’ll start at 10 am with a breakfast and end around 1:00 pm with a pizza lunch. You’ll also get a free College Park “Litter-Free” tee-shirt (please see below) as a participant. We’ll provide you necessary supplies, such as gloves, regular trash bags, and recycling bags. You do not need to bring anything else – except yourselves and your families and friends. We expect a sunny, warmer day (60 degrees). Hope to see you all tomorrow.
I’ve received the following alert from the Prince George’s County Police Department about an ongoing kidnapping / extortion scam in the community. Please spread the word. Thank you!
We want to alert members of our community about a scam that’s impacted some of our residents. The suspect or suspects are telling victims that their family member has been kidnapped and then demanding money.
In the last month, we’ve received reports of more than one dozen of these cases in Prince George’s County. In each case, a man calls a family member directly and demands money be transferred to a bank in Puerto Rico in return for their kidnapped family member’s safe return. Many of these calls are coming from a “240” area code. The scammer(s) have successfully received a money transfer from some of their targeted victims. Preliminarily, it’s believed the suspect is identifying victims through social media.
We are investigating these incidents with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Prince George’s County Police Department’s Robbery Unit at (301) 772-4905. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411 TIPS (8477), text “PGPD plus your message” to CRIMES (274637) on your cell phone to submit a tip online
Cpl. Nunez #3319
Prince George’s County Police Department
5000 Rhode Island Ave
(C) 240-695-7493 (W) 301-699-2631
At last night’s Council meeting, the City Council approved the purchase and installation of two electric vehicle charging stations in the City’s parking garage. The cost to purchase and install the two charging stations will not exceed $12,900.
The EV charging stations will be another visible sign of the City’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
City explored the cost of installing a charging station in the garage in order to be proactive and to support the City’s sustainability initiatives. No survey of the number of electric vehicles utilizing the parking garage has occurred. Staff has witnessed Teslas and Leafs parking in the garage on occasion.
Moreover, staff considered the following benefits during their decision to install the charging station.
– Public availability of EV charging encourages more people to purchase cleaner electric vehicles, thereby reducing emissions.
– Offering EV charging makes College Park an even more attractive destination.
– It pulls more visitors to local businesses and boosts the local economy. The typical EV driver has 2x the national average income, is highly educated and green-minded.
– EV drivers often choose destinations based on the availability of EV charging and they tend to shop around charging locations, so their car can be charging while dining or shopping.
– EV charging helps nearby businesses attract new customers, and build a steady revenue stream from repeat buyers who stay longer and spend more.
– It further establishes College Park as a green leader.
– Electric vehicle numbers nationwide have increased 10X in the last 4 years.
– There are about 6,000 electric vehicles in the state, that’s about 1 electric vehicle for every 400 conventionally-powered vehicles registered in MD. There are about 900 public charging stations across the state.
– Currently, there are about 16 EV stations on UM campus and 2 off campus on University property.
– The City will likely increase its fleet of electric vehicles in the future. Providing a charging station in the garage and several at DPW will enable the City to charge is EV fleet in the future.
Staff has not completed a feasibility study and recommended against it. The cost of the study would likely be equal to or greater than the EV charger and installation. For the reasons stated above, staff has recommended the purchase and install of the EV charger in the garage.
EV charger usage depends on the garage, the day of week and the time of day. Some locations are more popular than others. Nearly every charging station on the UM campus is usually occupied by 8am on weekdays.
The City will be eligible for a $5,000 (maximum) reimbursement from the Maryland Energy Administration if we move forward with the purchase of the charging stations.
At tonight’s Council meeting, the City Council will consider approving a letter to Congressman Hoyer asking him to look into the irregularities at the College Park Post Office. Many residents continue to express concerns about the service at this post office. Please see a draft copy of the letter below. Residents will have an opportunity to speak about the post office service before the meeting.
November 15, 2016
Honorable Steny Hoyer U.S. Representative,
5th Congressional District
1705 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Congressman Hoyer:
I am writing to bring to your attention certain ongoing problems at the College Park Post Office located at 9591 Baltimore Avenue.
Residents have informed the City Council about poor customer service and related problems with mail delivery. In 2011 and 2014, the
Mayor and Councilmembers sent correspondence to U.S Post Office staff regarding similar issues. Although no replies were received, some customer service improvements were noted. However, residents are again experiencing discourteous customer service and problems with mail delivery. Some residents have stopped using that location even though it is more convenient for them. The City of College Park recognizes the hard work of certain staff members at this location and throughout the Postal Service, and therefore is puzzled and disappointed by this continued sub-par service.
The City would greatly appreciate your staff looking into this situation and letting us know what actions have been or are being taken to ensure a satisfactory level of customer service.
Thank you for your service to our residents, and thank you for helping the City of College Park resolve the issues noted above.
Sincerely, Patrick L. Wojahn Mayor
cc: The Hon. Dannielle M. Glaros, Vice-Chair, Prince George’s County Council
The Hon. Mary Lehman, Prince George’s County Council The Maryland 21st District Delegation
Megan J. Brennan, U.S. Postmaster General
Ms. Tanya White, Postmaster, 9591 Baltimore Avenue
At tomorrow’s City Council meeting, the City Council will consider revisiting a request by the Cruz development in Branchville to erect a fence around their property with the Branchville Volunteer Fire Department.
The Council denied the request based on the community’s feedback about a year ago.
Here is a bit of history.
Back in August 13, 2015, Cruz Development Corporation submitted an appeal from City Code, §87-23, which prohibits construction of fences in the front yard. The specific request was for a variance to erect a 6-foot high, welded wire fence in the front yard.
On October 1, 2015, the APC conducted a hearing on the merits of the variance, at which the APC heard testimony and accepted evidence including the staff report, staff presentation and exhibits with respect to whether the subject application meets the standards for granting variances set forth in the Fence Ordinance. The APC voted 3-1-0 to recommend that the variance be granted. Exceptions were filed by the Branchville Volunteer Fire Department. The Mayor and Council held a public hearing on December 1,
The Mayor and Council held a public hearing on December 1, 2015 to consider the APC recommendation and heard oral argument from parties of record, including the Branchville Volunteer Fire Department and the Berwyn District Civic Association, who opposed the variance requests. The Mayor and Council determined in Resolution 15-R-29 to deny the requested fence variance.
The Cruz then filed an appeal to the Council’s decision to the Circuit Court for Prince George’s County. On October 17, 2016, an Order was issued by the Circuit Court reversing the denial of the variance and requiring the Mayor and Council to enter a final decision granting the fence variance.
At tomorrow’s meeting, the Council will consider a resolution to vacate the Resolution 15-R-29 in its entirety and that the application for the requested fence variance be granted for a period of three and one-half years from construction, or upon redevelopment of the Property, whichever is earlier, under the following conditions: (1) Correct the fence location plan to accurately record the height of the existing fences on the western property line. They are 4-feet tall not 8-feet tall. (2) Reduce the fence height to 4-feet to lessen the impact on the neighborhood. (3) Upgrade the material of the fence from welded wire to vertical, aluminum or metal posts or something similar that would be more compatible with the neighborhood, subject to the approval of the City staff.
The term “Warm-Up Theft” is a widely used term among car thieves to describe the stealing of a car that has been left running and unattended to “warm-up.” During the winter months, many motorists leave their vehicle running in an attempt to warm up the interior of the vehicle prior to getting behind the wheel.
However, this practice is one that causes two problems. First, leaving a car unattended and running is a violation of the State of Maryland Vehicle Law, Article 21 Section 1101 (a) Fine $70.00 (1pt)/Cont. to accident $110.00 (3pts) and second, the practice of leaving your vehicle running and unattended provides for a quick and easy target for car thieves.
Following these simple tips will help keep you from being left out in the cold:
- Never leave your car running or the keys in the ignition when you are away from it, even for “just a minute.”
- Keep valuables out of sight or in the trunk. Purses, credit cards, and cell phones in plain view only help attract thieves.
- Always roll up the windows and lock your car, even if it is in your driveway, garage, or in front of your home.
- Never leave the vehicle title in your car. If stolen, it makes it easier for the thief to dispose of your vehicle. It can also make you a target for identity theft.
- Be alert when approaching your car, have a plan of action, and have your keys in your hand. Check around, under, and in your vehicle for suspicious individuals. Immediately leave the scene to get help if you have any concerns for your safety.
- Only park your car in busy, well-lit areas.
- Install a mechanical locking device – commonly called a club, collar, or j-bar – that locks to the steering wheel, column, or brake.
- If your vehicle has an alarm or other anti-theft device, USE IT.
Keep an eye out for the new recycling decals that will be placed on all City recycling bins! Department of Public Works crews are currently distributing the decals throughout the City – first on replacement bins and then onto new lids that will be retrofitted onto the remaining recycling bins. This process should be completed by the end of the year.
The College Park Veterans Committee invites you and your family to share in the College Park Veterans Day Observance today, November 11, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. at the College Park Veterans Memorial at U.S. Route 1 (Baltimore Ave.) and Greenbelt Rd.
The program will include keynote speaker Monsignor Karl Chimiak (retired Chaplain Colonel, United States Air Force), pastor of St. Joseph’s Church in Beltsville and chaplain of local and state police and firefighters. There will also be music and wreath laying in fitting tribute to the men and women who have served our country.
Remarks will be made by Mayor Patrick Wojahn and B.W. Tom Davis.
Parking is being made available by the AMF Bowling Alley at 9021 Baltimore Ave.
For more information, contact the City Clerk’s office via email or 240-487-3501.
Today is the second Thursday of the month and hence the day when we have our monthly NCPA meeting.
The meeting will start with a presentation by a representative from the WSSC. There have been a number of complaints and questions about their current improvement work that is taking place in Daniels Park.
We’ll also discuss the proposed Community Bulletin Boards in our district. We will review options for the two community bulletin boards that will be installed in our neighborhood.
The Duvall Field Committee will then present a report on potential improvements for Duvall Field will be reviewed.
Members will also discuss the Mundo Market located at 5000 Edgewood Road, College Park, Maryland 20740. The Mundo Market has recently applied for a Class B liquor license through the Prince George’s County Board of License Commissioners. This hearing is currently scheduled for November 22, 2016. Mundo Market will also be on the City Council’s agenda for the November 15, 2016.
The meeting will take place at Phillips-Kleiner VFW Post at 5051 Branchville Road, starting at 7:30. Hope to see you all there. Thanks.