Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Council Tentatively Approves Wheaton Redevelopment Program

Yesterday we unanimously gave tentative approval to the Wheaton Redevelopment Program. It will guide revitalization of Wheaton’s downtown area, with more than $66.1 million committed to create a civic core in the heart of downtown Wheaton. This plan gets Wheaton moving by providing a new employment presence, green space and a long-term commitment to doing what it takes to make Wheaton shine.

One significant part of the plan will be the County’s commitment to build a 150,000 square foot headquarters building for the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) and large town square—with ample green space—on what is known as Parking Lot 13 near Triangle Lane. The site currently includes approximately 150 to 160 parking spaces. It is estimated that a new government office building will bring more than 400 employees to downtown Wheaton each day. The project will not only include employee parking, but also will include public parking to replace the spaces lost on Parking Lot 13.

Over the next two years, the County will conduct a series of studies to prepare for redevelopment and begin designing the government-owned building and the town square. The plan also includes funding to study and begin planning construction of a platform above the WMATA (Metro) bus bay site at the corner of Georgia Avenue and Veirs Mill Road.

The Wheaton Redevelopment Program was established in 2000, with the goal of encouraging private reinvestment through targeted, complementary public investment. The Council will formally approve the plan when it approves the six-year Capital Improvements Program in late May.

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