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The new master plan and SMA will establish development policies consistent with the vision of the 2002 Prince George's County Approved General Plan recommendations for this subregion. The goals of the master plan are to enhance the quality and character of the community, encourage quality economic development, preserve and protect environmentally sensitive and scenic land, and make efficient use of existing and proposed county infrastructure and investment for the Subregion I area. The new master plan and SMA will replace the 1990Subregion I Master Plan and Sectional Map Amendment.
The 2002 General Plan sets broad goals, objectives, policies, and strategies to guide development. It designates growth Tiers, Centers and Corridors that establish the policy basis for preparation of more detailed master plans and provide the benchmark against which plan recommendations can be evaluated. The places the Subregion I area into two growth policy Tiers, one Center, and one Corridor. Over half of the subregion is in the Developing Tier. This is intended to be an area of low- to moderate-density suburban residential communities, distinct commercial centers, and employment hubs that are transit serviceable. Its policies emphasize balancing the pace of development with the demands for adequate roads and public facilities and encouraging contiguous expansion of development where public facilities and services can be more efficiently provided.
The remainder of the subregion is in the Rural Tier and the majority of these properties are publicly owned and include large federal research facilities such as the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center and the Patuxent Research Refuge. The Rural Tier policies encourage the protection of woodlands for wildlife habitat, recreation, and agricultural pursuits and preservation of the rural character and vistas that now exist. Planning policies in the Rural Tier are intended to balance pressure for residential development and landowners’ equity with the desire to maintain rural environments and character.
MAJOR PLANNED AND PROPOSED PROJECTS
Intercounty Connector (ICC)
The ICC is a planned 18-mile toll highway that will be the most expensive highway project in the Washington region at a cost of $2.4 billion. The six-lane highway Maryland State Highway Administration project will traverse through both Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties from I-370 in Gaithersburg to US 1 in Laurel. Approximately three miles of the 18-mile highway will be located in Prince George’s County. The entire project is scheduled for completion is 2011; with the three-mile portion in Prince George’s County schedule to begin construction in 2008.
Konterra Town Center
Straddling both sides of I-95, the Konterra Town Center is a planned mix-use regional activity center that will include more than 4,500 residential units and over 5.5 million square feet of office, retail and hotel uses. Konterra Town Center East is comprised of 488-acres and will concentrate on vertical mixed-use development, incorporating multi-family dwelling units, office space and hotel operations on top of retail uses. Townhouse residential products will surround the main activity center. Konterra Town Center West comprised of 642 acres will provide horizontal mixed-use development and include big box retailers surrounded by lower-density, single-family homes and open space.
On October 28, 2004 the Prince George's County Planning Board initiated a new master plan and a concurrent sectional map amendment (SMA) for the Subregion I area. A five-month extension to the timeframe for the preparation of the preliminary Subregion I Master Plan/SMA was approved in October 2006. The Planning Board adopted the preliminary plan on December 6, 2007 (Prince George’s County Resolution No. 07-218).
On March 25, 2008, the District Council held a worksession, considered hearing testimony, and proposed amendments to the adopted master plan and endorsed SMA, and determined that the record did not permit it to make the necessary findings, but that additional evidence is needed with respect to the matters specified in CR-16-2008.