Today: Arbor Day 2021 Celebration

Join the City of College Park in celebrating Arbor Day as we plant an evergreen tree in James Adams Park in the Lakeland Community.

Registration for this event is required. All state, county, and CDC COVID-19 guidelines must be adhered to, including but not limited to, face coverings and distancing of 6 ft. from others outside of your household.

Parking: Street parking is available along Navahoe Street. Permitting restrictions will be lifted during the event along Navahoe Street.
[City of College Park]

Grocery Giveaway – This Saturday

Sunnyside Road Resurfacing Work Update

Our City Engineer advised us recently that this week M T Laney Construction, Washington Gas resurfacing contractor, will begin milling and resurfacing all the streets affected by the recent gas main replacement project in the Sunnyside neighborhood. The contractor will be providing custom hi vis uniforms for the workers and a 48-hour notice on those streets that are going to be worked on.  Vehicles left on the street when the construction begins will be relocated onto a nearby street by the WSSC contractor. He also sent the attached map showing the affected streets.

Thankfully, now the gas work is actually complete. The paving contractor, M T Laney, is now performing the permanent trench repairs, unlike the repairs made while the gas work was being performed, where the road surface was repeatedly cut open many times and patched temporarily.

Soon after M T Laney permanently repairs and seals all the trenches where the new gas lines were installed those streets will be resurfaced from curb to curb.

We are look at mid May for Sunnyside to be finished.

We appreciate the inconvenience this resurfacing work is causing to the residents. Thankfully, the road surfacing is the last part of the work a utility company (Washington Gas or WSSC) does. So, it looks like the WSSC will not be coming again after the resurfacing work is completed.

Tree Giveaway Day – Saturday, May 1, 2021

Join your neighbors on Saturday, May 1 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the College Park Airport (1909 Corporal Frank Scott Drive) as MNCPP-C, Department of Parks and Recreation, Prince George’s County gives away trees to the community.
As a part of its conservation commitment, College Park Airport and College Park Aviation Museum are planting more than 1,500 trees in the City of College Park and surrounding areas and giving away 500 to the local community.
The event focus is Trees For Tomorrow. Tree species available include Flowering Dogwood, Black Gum & White Oak.
The trees will be in 5 – 7 gallon containers, which are easily transportable.

Safeway to Offer COVID Vaccines at the UMD Campus

Starting tomorrow, Monday to Wednesday, April 26-28, 2021, Safeway Pharmacy will be providing Pfizer vaccinations at the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center on the College Park campus.

Here is the vaccine appointment link. Please share this with your friends and neighbors.

The UMD vaccine site location is:
Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center
7801 Alumni Drive
College Park, MD 20742

Arriving at the Vaccine Clinic:
The Vaccination Clinic is at the Samuel IV Riggs Alumni Center, located next to the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center and Maryland Stadium.  Complimentary parking is available in close proximity to the Riggs Alumni Center in the Stadium Drive Garage (SDG), Lot 1 and Lot Z during your vaccination appointment.

Enter campus from Route 193. At the roundabout, turn right onto Alumni Drive. Enter the Stadium Drive Garage from the south entrance (between Riggs Alumni Center and Stadium Drive Garage) or proceed straight to Lot 1 or Lot Z.

ADA accessible parking is available next to the Riggs Alumni Center (near the entrance of the Stadium Drive Garage).

Directions can be found here.

More about the announcement is here.

Beltsville Garden Club Plant Sale

Beltsville Garden Club will be hosting this great plant sale, next Saturday, 8 am – 12 noon.

Last April Cleanup Saturdays is Tomorrow

April Cleanup Saturdays
April 24 from 7:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Department of Public Works, 9217 51st Avenue
Our last spring cleanup day is next Saturday! For details see below under events or visit: https://www.collegeparkmd.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=236

Green/Yellow Line Riders asked to Plan Ahead for Track Work in May

Metro is reminding Green and Yellow line customers to plan ahead for scheduled track work May 1 through May 9. That will require free shuttle buses to replace trains at four stations over one weekend and the weeklong closure of West Hyattsville.
The work will occur during the previously scheduled May 1-2 weekend shutdowns of West Hyattsville, Prince George’s Plaza, College Park-U of MD, and Greenbelt, and during the week of May 3 through May 9, when West Hyattsville will be closed. The FEMA Community Vaccination Center at Greenbelt will remain open during this time. For more information, visit this site.

New Mixed Use Development Proposed at the Corner of Route 1 and Campus Drive

Ken Ulman from the Terrapin Development discussed a proposed development with office space, apartments, and shops at the empty lot next to the Hotel at the University of Maryland at the corner of Campus Drive and Baltimore Avenue.

The site was considered for a town center development by the community about a decade ago. Mr. Ulman told the Council the project team will consider incorporating some of the elements of the community-oriented amenities into the development.

As part of the university’s Discovery District, the five-acre project will feature 550,000 square feet of office space, as many as 250 apartments and first-floor shops.

Philadelphia-based Brandywine Realty Trust will manage the project at the corner of Route 1 across from the front entrance to the University of Maryland which will be designed by Baltimore architecture firm Ayers Saint Gross.

This week’s discussion focused on the development of parcel B & C, which are along Campus Drive, just east of Route 1.

No plan has been submitted to the planning department as of yet.

Council to Get an Update on Tree Cutting Project around the College Park Airport

A requirement for the Airport’s continued operation is the maintenance of trees in the flight path of the landing strip. Tree work is required to maintain the height of the trees at both ends of the runway for safe landings and take-offs for the aircraft.

Representatives from M-NCPPC presented information to the City Council on February 4, 2020, about the planned tree work and again on May 19, 2020, to review the work in progress. The scheduled tree work near the Airport is near, if not, complete.

Representatives from M-NCPPC, which operates the airport,  will present information about the completed tree work and the next steps of the project.\ at this week’s worksession.

City to Get New COVID Relief Funds under American Rescue Plan

The Council will get an update on budget revisions, related to funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), prior to the upcoming budget introduction. The City is expected to receive ARPA funding and that it should exceed $15 million.

One of the allowable uses for the ARPA’s funding (referred to as “Local Fiscal Recovery Funds” or LFRF) is to cover revenue loss due to the COVID- 19 emergency. The lost revenue the City can recover is estimated at $4 million for FY2020/FY2021 and $2 million for FY2022. It is proposed that the bulk of the funding related to recovered lost revenue be transferred to the CIP/Capital Projects Fund for important projects already underway; specific requests by Mayor & Council for the FY2022 Budget; and future capital and infrastructure projects to be determined.

Also, specifically from FY2022 lost revenue, an additional $180,000 is recommended to be included in the FY2022 Proposed Budget for operating expenses that had been cut or excluded from the original proposed FY2022 budget. These cuts were based on expectations of significantly reduced revenues in FY2022 (this was prior to the enactment of ARPA). Finally, the Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (LFRF) – American Rescue Plan Act shows the funding for small business grants, family/individual financial assistance; non-profit food services; and several other categories related to the pandemic.

The budget as proposed leaves over $7 million of LFRF money at the end of FY2022 for use in FY2023, FY2024, and FY2025. Staff reiterates that these amounts are estimates/projections based on preliminary information in the ARPA. The City Council will make a final determination on the specific uses and related programs for the funds. This includes the development of a comprehensive plan to determine how ARPA can best benefit the City, residents, businesses, and other stakeholders.

Council to Discuss Post Office Issues with USPS Officials

Hollywood Post Office

Hollywood Post Office, College Park

In recent years, the City Council has received complaints or sent letters to USPS and federal representatives to discuss many issues at two College Park Post Offices.

In the past, we collected some of the complaints from residents to the Post Office Operations. We also sent a letter to Congressman Hoyer with these issues.

Unfortunately, many of these issues still persist.

The potential issues the Council will discuss at tomorrow’s meeting include:

(a) North College Park Post Office Customer Experience: customer service complaints.
(b) Mail delivery issues, such as mail being miss-delivered, mail taking a long time to reach its destination, mail getting lost.
(c) Theft of mail from post office mailboxes: (d) Condition of the Calvert Road Post Office building: Public Services reports that repairs have been made.
(d) Noise from driver training in the parking lot at Calvert Road Post Office: Public Services investigated and reports that noise readings do not exceed the City’s noise code.

The City understands that US postal police are conducting a region-wide investigation.

Mr. John Campbell, Regional Director of Post Office Operations, and Ms. Tanya White, Postmaster, North College Park Post Office, will attend the Council Worksession.

Please let me know if you continue to have issues with the services at the Hollywood Post Office.

Thank You for Today’s Community Cleanup

I want to thank all the volunteers to make today’s community cleanup a success. Due to COVID, volunteers were asked to gather at multiple locations in small groups, maintaining the CDC-mandated COVID rules. I signed up to volunteer at the Hollywood Community garden. Together we cleaned up a couple of beds in the garden. I heard the other groups also did a wonderful job at their sites.

I also want to thank the organizers and sponsors of the event, in particular, the Hollywood Elementary School PTA, the AlHuda school community, the City’s Committee for a Better Environment (CBE), UMD’s Office of Community Engagement, the Hollywood Community Garden Club. Finally, my thanks to City staff, in particular the Public Works crew, for providing necessary supplies & tools and collecting trash after the event.

Free Community Grab N Go Meals – Tomorrow at 6pm

Please stop by tomorrow for College Park United Methodist Church & Al Huda School free community meal giveaway


City Contributes $10K in Greenbelt’s Effort Opposing SC MAGLEV Project

At this week’s meeting, the Council approved a grant of $10,000  to support Greenbelt’s cost for legal counsel opposing SC MAGLEV project

The City of Greenbelt has recently requested to share the cost of legal Counsel opposing SC Maglev project. Greenbelt has engaged the services of Jill Grant & Associates, LLC, to spearhead a review of the DEIS, and they are working diligently to identify legal deficiencies and inaccuracies in the They also anticipate bringing on a number of technical experts in fields including geotechnical engineering (specializing in tunneling), transportation and ridership analysis, and air quality. Currently, we estimate that these costs will total $300,000. The comment period for the DEIS and Section 4(t) evaluation ends on April 22, 2021.