UPPER MARLBORO – College Park Academy’s lease on its current building expires next year and the University of Maryland wants to make sure its academy isn’t homeless in 2017. At a Prince George’s County Planning Board meeting last week, the planning staff presented a mandatory referral for the new location of the College Park Academy […]
UPPER MARLBORO – College Park Academy’s lease on its current building expires next year and the University of Maryland wants to make sure its academy isn’t homeless in 2017.
At a Prince George’s County Planning Board meeting last week, the planning staff presented a mandatory referral for the new location of the College Park Academy and two research and development flex spaces in the M-Square Office Park. The presentation was pushed to the last planning board meeting of the summer to accommodate the university’s needs, as the lease for the College Park Academy (CPA) will be over at the end of the 2016-2017 school year.
The university’s plan calls for the redevelopment and development of two parcels of land. The two locations, at 5551 Rivertech Court and 6501 Lafayette Ave., are located in Riverdale near existing research buildings, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Center for Weather and Climate Prediction and in between Lafayette Avenue and River Road.
The construction on the two new sites will be done through a joint effort between the university and St. John Properties, Inc., with the university contributing 14.92 acres of real property and St. John Properties contributing “the capital needed to design, build, operate and maintain the project,” according to a University System of Maryland Board of Regents document. The two will share 50 percent of the net cash flow from the project.
College Park Academy is one of a handful of public charter schools in the county run through a partnership of private corporations or community groups and the Prince George’s County Public Schools system. CPA specifically offers college-preparatory programs where students can earn up to 60 college credits, 25 of which can be University of Maryland credits.
The school, currently housed in buildings near St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church and the St. Francis International School, is quickly approaching the end of its lease and the new location was the best option for the university, planning board staff said.
“CPA will lease a 50,107 square-foot building (configured close to the [research and development] buildings, with some customization to accommodate a school) to be built on a 4.55-acre parcel. It is anticipated that CPA will enter into a 15-year lease for this building,” according to board of regents documents.
The research and development building will be designed to house “high tech” companies, according to planning board staff, and will be across the road from the developing Riverdale Park Station.
“On one parcel, comprising 10.37 acres, the joint venture will build approximately 111,240 square feet of flex research and development space within two buildings. This flex R&D space is distinguished from traditional office space,” the board of regents document reads.
Some distinguishing aspects of the flex space would include nine-foot ceiling heights in offices, 16-foot heights for storage space, loading bays, no common areas for “making rents more economical than traditional office space rents,” and proposed flexibility in regard to tenant space needs.
“This flex R&D space can be configured to meet hundreds of different tenant/use requirements to serve businesses in key sectors of engineering, data analytics, earth sciences, virtual reality, cybersecurity, quantum computing, linguistics, additive manufactu- ring, e commerce, robotics, aerospace or biotechnology,” the memo said.