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North College Park Community Center Site Selection will Start this Spring

We’ve got some very good news about the much-anticipated North College Park Community Center.

The final process for selecting a suitable site for the proposed community center will start this Spring.

We’ve been told that the M-NCPPC has been already considering 6 sites for the center in north College Park.  These sites are all north of Greenbelt Road and South of the Beltway. Some sites have private owners while others would be joint-use facilities. All sites have the ability to construct, at minimum, a 12,000 square foot building and have major road access.

Community members partaking in activities at a community center | Photo By: Maple Grove Arts Center

The M-NCPPC has been working to select these sites as part of their Formula 2040 plan, which calls for a 12,000 sq. ft. community center in north College Park.

M-NCPPC confirmed its plan to build the community center at its October 2020 virtual community meeting on the Formula 2040 plan (please see below) in our area.

The community has also been very supportive to have a Community center in the northern part of College Park. This was reflected in the survey we took among the local residents.

The local residents and the local community association, NCPCA have been advocating for the center for many years.

For the past several years, College Park City Council has also been asking the M-NCPPC to build a community center in north College Park. A City-sponsored recreational study report also found that “a multi-use indoor facility/community center/senior center to be built in College Park was highly requested by survey residents“.

About 3 years ago, M-NCPPC also allocated $250,000 to do a feasibility study to bring an architectural/engineering firm to evaluate the sites for development feasibility, lead a community engagement process, develop test fits, create conceptual designs, and perform a cost projection. Thanks to District 1 Councilman Dernoga for securing the feasibility study money.

Currently, the M-NCPPC is in the final stages of an internal review of the request for proposals (RFP).  The next step is to procure a consulting firm.

The consultant team is scheduled to be on board in the first quarter of 2022. The community engagement will begin in the Spring and the project should be completed by the 3rd quarter of the year.

Due to the competitive nature of the ongoing negotiations with the property owners, these sites haven’t been shared with the community yet. The number of the proposed sites may increase as we bring a consultant on board for the feasibility study and they re-examine the existing pool of sites.

Once the final site is selected, the M-NCPPC will go into the construction phase. Unfortunately, the center’s construction budget hasn’t been funded yet!

In the meantime, PGC County Council Member Tom Dernoga has recently sent a letter to the College Park Mayor and Council asking us to help fund some portion of the cost to build the North College Park community center. Please see the letter below.

In his letter, CM Dernoga states that “success will be more likely and will occur sooner with City financial and planning collaboration”. According to staff, the City could commit ARPA funding (possibly from lost revenue recovered) to assist with the project.

College Park City Council will evaluate CM Dernoga’s request at the next Tuesday’s Council meeting.

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3 Comments to “North College Park Community Center Site Selection will Start this Spring”

  1. By Mary Cook, January 16, 2022 @ 9:00 am

    Thank you for a very comprehensive summary up all that has happened so far regarding the community center. For those who do not know, this effort was launched about five years ago by residents who strongly support such a Center in our community. The North College Park Community Association has repeatedly express support for the center, and will continue to do so. I hope that when it’s time for public input that dozens of our community members will come out and express their ideas. Things will be changing in North College Park In the next few years so let’s shape these changes to get quality amenities, retail and office space, as well as improve roads.

  2. By Carrie Christoph, January 18, 2022 @ 5:29 pm

    Thank you , this is very useful. What were the outcomes of the study done 3 years ago that cost us $250,000 ? Is there anywhere we can see that study ?

  3. By Fazlul Kabir, January 19, 2022 @ 12:36 am

    Hi Carrie, That study never happened. It is going to start this Spring.