The Urban Centers and Corridor Nodes Development Code is the result of an extensive 2-year-plus outreach and collaborative effort involving numerous county stakeholders, including citizens, developers and property owners, municipalities, public agencies, environmental groups, civic associations, and county policy makers. A consultant team consisting of the firms Code Studio, Ferrell Madden Lewis, and Rhodeside and Harwell was retained to assist planning staff in developing the code.
The initial stages focused on best practices analyses of different approaches to mixed-use development from jurisdictions across the country, including some that were selected because of similarities to Prince George’s County in terms of size, population demographics, physical conditions, and other factors. Several large-scale community meetings were held, followed by small group stakeholder interviews, to solicit ideas, comments, and suggestions. A technical advisory committee was established to assist staff and the consultant team in the discussion of specific technical issues necessary to address in a more urban pattern of development. Additional public input occurred during the process of developing the Subregion 4 Master Plan, with emphasis on the eight designated centers in the subregion, and how the proposed code could impact the future development of those centers. Lessons learned in Subregion 4 were applied to the code to address concerns identified by the stakeholders.
Several working drafts were produced and were subject to comprehensive reviews and comments by staff and pertinent agency representatives, leading to the Planning Board transmittal of the current version of the Urban Centers and Corridor Nodes Development Code.
The project website has been updated throughout the process, and articles and press releases have appeared throughout the process in county papers and the Prince George’s Newsletter. Finally, planning staff held numerous briefings with municipal representatives, civic associations, and others.