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Priority Preservation Area Functional Master Plan

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What's New

The 2012 Adopted and Approved Priority Preservation Area Functional Master Plan is available on-line. 

Other Documents and Resources

The Technical Bulletin is a companion document that contains a summary of farm and forest (easement) preservation programs and financial resources for agricultural best management practices and other important content. Click here to view. 

Highlights and Supplements Handout provides background information on the Priority Preservation Area (PPA) Plan, public input process, errata, and amendments sent to the Planning Board and District Council.

For information on available federal funding for farm and forest land, see the Natural Resources Conservation Service, 2014 Farm Bill, Conservation practices and programs for your land

The PPA Functional Master Plan lays the groundwork for protecting the PPA Plan by continuing to use existing tools and programs and implementing new tools that serve to accomplish the preservation goal set for the PPA. The plan provides guidance expressed through the vision, goal, and objective, as well as policies and strategies to address the preservation of farm and forest land uses in areas best suited for these uses in the County.

Public Participation Process, Adoption, and Approval

During summer 2010, focus group meetings were held for community leaders to introduce the PPA Plan in the proposed PPAs. In October and November 2010, three public meetings were scheduled for landowners and other stakeholders to become informed on the plan. For more information, see the powerpoint presentation.

On September 13, 2011, the first joint public hearing was held at the Prince George's County Parks and Recreation Auditorium, 6600 Kenilworth Avenue in Riverdale, Maryland, due to flooding at the County Administration Building. Click here to see the Powerpoint presentation.

On January 24, 2012, the second joint public hearing was held at the County Administration Building,
14741 Governor Oden Bowie Drive in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. Click here to view the presentation given.

On April 12, 2012, the Planning Board adopted the master plan with amendments.

On July 10, 2012, the District Council approved the master plan with amendments.

If you have questions or comments, e-mail them to

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This plan was developed for Prince George's County in accordance with House Bill 2 (HB2), the Agricultural Stewardship Act of 2006. It requires that a county seeking state certification of its agricultural land preservation program identify PPAs, and update its comprehensive plan with a PPA element. Prince George's County is seeking certification; thus, it must designate a PPA that:

  • Contains productive agricultural or forest soils or is capable of supporting profitable agricultural and forestry enterprises where productive soils are lacking.
  • Is governed by local policies that stabilize the agricultural and forest land base so that development does not convert or compromise agricultural or forest resources.
  • Is large enough to support the kind of agricultural operations that the County seeks to preserve, as represented in the comprehensive plan.


According to HB2, the PPA element shall:

  • Establish appropriate goals for the amount and types of agricultural resource land to be preserved in a PPA, including a County acreage goal for preservation through easements and zoning, to be equal to or at least 80 percent of the remaining undeveloped land in the area.
  • Include maps indicating the boundaries of the PPA.
  • Describe the kinds of agricultural production the County intends to support and the amount of development the County intends to allow.
  • Describe the PPA within the context of the County's growth management plans.
  • Identify shortcomings of current or future improvement plans for the County's zoning and land management practices.
  • Describe how the County's preservation goals will be accomplished in the PPA, including:
    • A strategy to protect land from development through zoning.
    • A desired amount of land to preserve with permanent easements.
    • A strategy to maintain a rural environment capable of supporting the kind of production intended.
    • Include an evaluation of the ability of the County's zoning and other land use management practices to do the following:
    • Limit the impact of subdivision and development.
    • Allow time for easement purchase.
    • Achieve the goals of the Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation (MALPF) program before land succumbs to development.
    • Describe the methods the County will use to effectively achieve preservation goals within the designated PPA to achieve the acreage preservation goals of MALPF and the County.

    Also in 2006, House Bill 1141 was enacted, which requires a planning commission of a County or municipal corporation to consider comprehensively the effects of any planned or proposed land use on forest and agricultural conservation lands, as well as on stream and wetlands. It requires that these natural resource lands intended for protection or conservation be designated in a sensitive area's element of the County comprehensive plan. The goal is to prevent any negative impacts to the natural resources of a county or municipality.

    This functional master plan established a countywide PPA. Portions of the PPA were designated through the Subregion 1, Subregion 5, and Subregion 6 Master Planning Process. The plan contains goals, policies, and strategies that will guide agricultural preservation efforts in the County. The plan amends the 2002 Prince George's County Approved General Plan and will meet the requirements of the House Bill 2, the Agricultural Stewardship Act of 2006, and House Bill 1141—Land Use-Local Government Planning.