A new Technical Assistance Panel – or TAP – report sponsored by the La Plata Town Center Corporation (LPTCC) and released by ULI Washington has concluded that downtown La Plata is poised for change and recommended a host of strategies aimed at spurring and enhancing redevelopment.
The report, titled “Connections and Community: Knitting Together La Plata’s Center” documents the findings of a panel of a panel of nine ULI members who were convened May 11-12, 2016 to shape and focus development in a roughly six-block area north of Charles Street in downtown La Plata to make it a more welcoming and vibrant place with a true identity.
La Plata, located in Charles County, MD, is a growing suburban/exurban commuter community that is part of the greater Washington, DC region. The panel’s recommendations took into account the 15.5 acre study area’s existing challenges and strengths when recommending plans for redevelopment. On one hand, vehicular congestion, fragmented ownership, and two major property owners holding 1/3 of the study area hinder redevelopment prospects. On the other hand, the concentration of parcels, existing utility infrastructure, and market strength of the study area create opportunities for redevelopment.
Recommendations from the Panel touch on issues relating to transportation, connectivity, and circulation; highest and best use for development; design; funding; prioritization; and implementation. Both concept plans called for relocating the library, which panelists noted has been used in past instances as a catalyst for community place-making and development. Recommendations also included the creation a town square or civic plaza that would anchor retail and residential development. The Panel concluded that their plans are just two examples of several different possibilities for redevelopment, and highlighted that multiple design approaches could achieve the desired outcome for the study area.
You can find the full TAP report here.
Roy G. Hale, Mayor of La Plata and President of the La Plata Town Centre Corporation, released the following statement in response to the release of the report”
“I feel confident in expressing the sincere gratitude of the Town Council, the Town’s professional staff and the corporate board of directors to ULI Washington for accepting the engagement to study our immediate downtown area and, most important, a willingness to provide realistic and cost effective recommendations for economic redevelopment.”
“The quality of the panel and their collective expertise were outstanding. Noting right up front that the Town of La Plata had a number of challenges which would need to be addressed in the proposed redevelopment area, the panel was forthright in identifying each challenge and provided two concept plans as a way to move the project forward. The panel has completed their work, it is now up to the Town of La Plata and its assembled resources to turn this concept plan into a reality.”
The nine members who compromised the Technical Assistance Panel included:
- Panel Chair: Andy Brown, Stanford Properties
- Daniel Anderton, Dewberry
- Brian Cullen, Keane Enterprises
- Melina Duggal, Duggal Real Estate Investors
- Daniel Hardy, Renaissance Planning Group
- Donny James, Revenue Authority of Prince George’s County
- Julia Koster, National Capital Planning Commission
- Paul Moyer, VHB
- Suman Sorg, DLR Group | Sorg
For more information on ULI Washington’s Technical Assistance Panels, visit: http://washington.uli.org/what-we-do/technical-assistance-panels/.
To receive ULI Washington press releases click here.