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Month: November 2015 Page 1 of 3

Council to Hear Oral Argument in Branchville Crossing’s Fence Application

At tomorrow night’s Council meeting, the Council will hear oral argument on a request by Cruz Development, for a departure from the City fence ordinance to erect a 6′ high front yard fence. The property (called “Branchville Crossing”) is located at 4800-4900 block of Branchville Road.

The Property has two very long frontages: 630.16-feet along University Boulevard (MD 193) and 527.88-feet along Branchville Road. The frontage along University Boulevard has a guardrail and no curb-cuts. There is unrestricted access to the property from Branchville Road.

Cruz asserts that the property has been used for illegal dumping, trespassing and other activities that appear to access through the front yard without proper authorization and a fence is needed for security and to prevent liability. Cruz referenced use of his property for the burning of a vehicle and for parking without his permission. The property is more difficult to monitor and police than a developed property and the owner is out of town. Continued information here to learn more about illegal dumping, causes, reasons, effects and solutions.

The Branchville Volunteer Fire Department testified that installation of a fence would block their use of the applicant’s property when turning and maintaining their vehicles. Vehicles belonging to Fire Department members are routinely parked on the gravel area on the applicant’s property. On October 1, 2015, the APC conducted a hearing on the merits of the variance, at which the APC heard testimony , and it recommended the approval of variance by a 3-1-0 vote.

Staff recommends that the front yard fence variance from the City Fence Ordinance be approved with the following conditions:
(a) Correct the fence location plan to accurately reflect the height of the existing fences on the western property line. They are 4-feet tall not 8-feet tall.
(b) Reduce the fence height to 4-feet to lessen the impact on the neighborhood.
(c) Upgrade the material of the fence from welded wire to black metal or something similar that would be more compatible with the neighborhood.

Public Meeting on Greenbelt Metro Interchange Project

The Maryland Department of Transportation’s State Highway Administration (SHA) is moving forward with the design of the Greenbelt Metro Interchange Project along I-95/I-495 (Capital Beltway) from US 1 to MD 295 (Baltimore/Washington Parkway) in Prince George’s County. This 3.2-mile-long project will facilitate the planned Transit-Oriented Development at the Greenbelt Metro Station and the potential relocation of the FBI headquarters to the Greenbelt Metro Station area.

For additional information, you are invited to attend a public meeting on:
· Wednesday, December 9, 2015
· Eleanor Roosevelt High School
· 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Please click on the image below to see more details about the project and the public meeting.


Tapped: 60-minute Film About the Bottled Water Industry

Tapped: 60-minute Film about the Bottled Water Industry
When: Saturday, December 5, 4 pm
Where: College Park City Hall, Council chambers, 2nd floor, 4500 Knox Road, College Park, MD 20740

Although this award-winning documentary was released in 2009, the topic is as important—if not more so—than it ever was. This film reveals the truth about the bottled water industry and prompts many important questions, such as: Is bottled water, and the package it comes in, safe, or at least safer, than tap water? Is the convenience worth the environmental impact?

Film followed by discussion and door prizes!

RSVP: Appreciated for planning purposes–but not required:

Cosponsored by the College Park Committee for a Better Environment (CBE) and the Prince George’s group of the Maryland Sierra Club

Protecting Your Residence While You’re Home or Away

residents' Safety

Leaf Collection Calendar: Nov-Dec 2015

Please see below the updated leaf collection calendar. The green and orange boxes indicate scheduled dates on east and west side of Rhode Island Avenue respectively.

North College Park Crime Map – November 15-24, 2015

Stolen Vehicle

[11/19/15]STLVEH18:4520:179500 Blk 51ST AVE,
[11/24/15]STLVEH10:4611:389600 Blk MILESTONE WAY


Breaking and Entering

[11/17/15]BREAKR12:0013:4710200 Blk BALTIMORE AVE,



[11/20/15]THEFT12:1412:46SUPER 8 MOTEL, 9150 Baltimore Ave, College Park, MD 20740
[11/23/15]THEFT13:1614:089100 Blk BALTIMORE AVE,
[11/23/15]THEFT19:5320:22SHOPPERS FOOD – COLLEGE PARK, 4720 Cherry Hill Rd, College Park, MD 20740


Robbery Citizen

[11/22/15]ROBCIT19:0721:11BUFFALO WILD WINGS, 10240 Baltimore Ave, College Park, MD 20740

December Live Smart, Eat Local Tour

The next next “College Park Live Smart, Eat Local” Tour will take place on Wednesday, December 16th at 7:00 p.m.
at Mamma Lucia Restaurant, at 4734 Cherry Hill Road (next to Shoppers). Please spread the word. Thanks.

Council Mulls Comments on Greenbelt Station

At tomorrow’s meeting, the City Council will consider approving a resolution about City’s views on the 3rd phase Greenbelt Station development. The Council discussed the items at last Tuesday’s worksession.

Some of the items we’ve been considering are as follows:

1. Revise the site plan to relocate the pedestrian overpass to the area shown as Alignment 2 in the City of College Park Pedestrian Overpass Feasibility Study (copy attached). a. Remove townhomes on lots 34, 35, 40 and 41. b. Dedicate a 50-foot Public Use Easement to accommodate a 12-foot wide trail and 16-foot wide bridge per AASHTO Guidelines.

2. Show a detail for the proposed sound wall that uses an absorptive material or coating in order to mitigate reflective noise. a. The absorptive material or coating shall have a Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) of 0.70 or greater. b. The absorptive material or coating shall be used for the entirety of the west side of the wall facing the railroad tracks.

3. Revise the site plan to provide more detail for the retail site on lot 116 including the building footprint and access.

4. The City requests that the Developer conduct an analysis of current noise levels in north College Park neighborhoods located parallel to the Southcore /Greenbelt Station Development . Suggested analysis points are 9100 and 9200 blocks of 51st Avenue and the 5200 block of Huron Street. Analysis should include daytime and evening noise and levels when METRO and CSX trains are passing and ambient noise level.

The City further requests that the addition of new structures and installation of a sound barrier between the Southcore property and the railroad tracks be constructed in a manner that does not increase the current noise levels in north College Park.

To facilitate no additional increase in noise levels in north College Park, the material used for the sound barrier should

5. While the current number of proposed units meets the trip cap established for Southcore, we are concerned about changes to and increases in traffic circulation in College Park as a result of the project. The City asks for consideration in reducing the density of units in the development, in order to add more green space within the development and reduce overall trip count through the development, subsequently reducing traffic impacts on MD-193 and Rhode Island Avenue in College Park.

Once the proposed Greenbelt Parkway is built connecting the north and south core developments, and the proposed FBI development takes place in north core, the trip count through the development from MD-193 to the beltway is expected to rise significantly.

We plan to make the final draft before the meeting tomorrow night.

Small Business Saturday, November 28


Small Business Saturday will take place on Nov 28th, and College Park is going to celebrate with a #ShopSmall Selfie event!

At last week’s Council meeting, the Mayor and Council proclaimed November 28th as the Small Business Day.

How it works:
1.) Show your support by taking selfies while you shop at your
favorite local businesses on Nov 28th.

2.) Tag the businesses in each photo and post the photos using the following hashtags: #ShopSmall and #ShopCollegePark.

I hope to see you on Saturday, 11/28!

City to Ask Revoking Backyard Grill’s Liquor License

At next Tuesday’s council meeting, the City Council will ask the County’s liquor licensing commission to revoke the liquor license of College Park Backyard Grill.

The letter requests that, based on the severity of the case, and the fact that this is the second incident involving a serious violation of the law, the liquor license for this premises be revoked, and that the BOLC take any other action necessary to prevent further threats to the public health and safety.

The letter will be sent with the City’s position with respect to the Show Cause Hearing to be held by the BOLC concerning an incident which occurred on September 26, 2015 at DKL Investments, Inc., t/a Backyard Sports Grill, located at 7313 A and B Baltimore Avenue.

City staff will be authorized to appear at the show cause hearing to present the City’s position.

On September 26, 2015, an incident occurred inside the Backyard Sports Grill that involved a large fight during early morning hours. Security personnel were unable to break up the fight, which then spilled into the street. During the altercation, an off-duty Prince George’s County police officer who was working secondary employment at the premises was assaulted.

It has also been determined that a promoter was involved in the entertainment, which is a violation of BOLC rules.

This occurred in spite of the fact that the owners had assured the Mayor and Council during a work session on September 15, 2015 that they would cease using promoters. This is the second incident that has occurred at the premises in the recent past involving a violent incident and use of promoters.

The Council thinks that revocation of the license is necessary to prevent any further threats to public health and safety.

[Source: Staff report]

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