New College Park hotel may open in fall 2016 -- Gazette.Net


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A new 13-story, 292-room hotel and conference center could be coming to Route 1 in College Park as early as the fall of 2016.

Project developers and architects who unveiled plans for the building to City of College Park officials during an Aug. 6 work session said they hope the 329,000-square foot “The Hotel at the University of Maryland” will set the groundwork for future development along Route 1. The estimated cost of the project is $115 million.

The project, which will include restaurants, retail spaces and a spa, is being developed by Vienna, Va.- based residential property management company Southern Management Corp.

Councilman P.J. Brennan (Dist. 2) said he welcomed news of the development.

“I am really energized by this project,” Brennan said. “One of the things I’m most excited about is the jobs that the people in our community will be able to walk to.”

David Hillman, chairman and chief executive officer of Southern Management, said the development is expected to bring more than 300 permanent full-time positions to the city, as well as approximately 300 additional part-time jobs.

Hillman said that market studies he did in the area have shown that there is an “astounding” number of conferences coming to the University of Maryland, College Park, and much of that business is now going outside of Prince George’s County.

“That money should come here,” Hillman said.

Bob Greenberg, president of Cabin John-based Gordon & Greenberg Architects, said the design presented to the council was developed with input from the city, the county and the university. He said the building, which will have a “clean” design with a glass curtain-wall exterior, will include pedestrian-friendly gathering spaces with benches, restaurants with outside seating and a rooftop pool.

“It was designed in such a way to present itself and lay a foundation for a project that would enhance not only the city but the university,” he said.

Greenberg said his firm is working on a detailed site plan for the project, which will have to go before the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission and receive approval from the County Council.

Greenberg said he hopes construction on the project can begin in the spring.

apopovici@gazette.net