Stadium or not, House committee approves $400 million to develop entertainment and sports venues in Prince George’s

Prince George’s County leaders have embarked on an effort to create vibrant mixed-use development along the Metro Blue Line in the Largo/Landover area. An artist’s rendering shows the Largo Town Center subway station (center) and FedEx Field, home of the Washington Commanders (top left). Prince George’s County government image.

Efforts to create a vibrant hub in central Prince George’s County advanced on Monday when a House panel approved $400 million for an area county leaders call the Blue Line Corridor.

The funds were added by the appropriations committee to a measure, House Bill 897, which authorizes $200 million for renovations at minor league ballparks across the state.

The bill accompanies House Bill 896, which would provide $1.2 billion to upgrade Oriole Park to Camden Yards and M&T Bank Stadium. The appropriations committee voted on Monday to also send this measure to the House floor.

Prince George funds are a top priority for County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D). If they survive the legislative process intact, they could be used to support a convention center and/or a Merriweather Post-style amphitheater in the general vicinity of FedEx Field, home of the Washington Commanders.

County officials say the funds could also support the construction of a sports field where residents could play basketball and volleyball, a library, a cultural center, a market hall and/or a civic plaza. The bill, as written, would exclude the use of funds for a professional football stadium.

County and state officials stressed Monday that new facilities will move forward whether or not Washington commanders decide to build a new stadium in the county.

The team is in talks with state and local officials in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia about a new stadium. Governor Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R) said last month that Maryland would like to keep the team but will not enter a “bidding war” to do so. Virginia officials were to put in place an incentive package, but Gov. Glenn Youngkin (right) and the state legislature have yet to reach an agreement on it.

Prince George leaders applauded Monday’s vote.

“Our community hasn’t received a lot of investment over the years, so that’s huge. Whether the stadium stays or not,” Del said. Nick Charles (D-Prince George), chairman of the County House delegation. “From Largo to Capitol Heights, to have this type of investment that we’ve never had in this part of Prince George’s County is huge.”

A spokesperson for Hogan said he was “a strong supporter of the county executive’s economic development priorities.”

“As with all legislation, he will review anything the General Assembly sends to his office,” spokesman Michael Ricci added.

Another amendment to the state capital budget bill, approved Monday, would pre-authorize $200 million that could be used if the U.S. General Services Administration decides to build a new FBI headquarters. in Greenbelt or New Carrollton.

Montgomery Transportation Funds Approved

Montgomery County also scored a victory in the appropriations committee on Monday.

The panel voted to approve $27 million per year to fund a new or future bus rapid transit project. The county launched a BRT line in the Route 29 corridor in 2020, but authorities are considering new service along two other frequently congested thoroughfares, Rockville Pike (MD 355) and Veirs Mill Road (MD 586).

“As the state’s leader in bus rapid transit, we are grateful for the long-term investment in public transit in Montgomery County and around the state,” said the Montgomery County Executive Marc B. Elrich (D). “Bus Rapid Transit is an equity-focused form of transportation that has proven to be profitable, and with this investment, Montgomery County will be able to expand transit options that provide more access and mobility to our residents.”

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