CAPITOL HEIGHTS — Councilmember Derrick Leon Davis (District 6) announced plans for the Hampton Park Project, which will include retail, office space and hotels in the Hampton Park area, as well as ways for small and minority businesses based in the county to get involved, on July 24.

The project, a total of 25 acres along the 214 Central Avenue Corridor, entails $250 million in development, including a $35 million building for a Health and Human Services Building. The redevelopment site plan of the Hampton Mall is expected to bring in 2,200 jobs. It includes apartment buildings,100,000 square feet of retail and dining options, office space and a 120-150-room hotel.

Construction will begin on Sept. 13, and it will take 60 months to complete it.

“A project like Hampton Park is critical,” Davis said. “This is not something that was thought of overnight. It’s gone from the paper napkin, and it’s gone from the tablecloth, it went to the little piece of paper, the crude drawings to what we’re talking about making happen today.”

Davis called District 6 the “Heart of Prince George’s County” due to not only it’s location in the middle of the county, but also its designation as a health and life sciences corridor along the Central Avenue Corridor.

With the Regional Medical Center expected to open within the next few years, the Central Avenue Corridor will be the main vein into it, Davis said. As the new Hampton Park will be located nearby, it will be a significant throughway into what is expected to be a robust Largo Town Center area.

“It took us 20 plus years to get here, and it is going to take about five years to build it, but it will be here long after we’re gone building results for generations that come behind us,” Davis said.

According to Davis, the Hampton Park Project will be built through a Public-Private Partnership.

The project is directed by local developer Velocity Companies in collaboration with ARCTRUST, a private Real Estate Investment Trust, and Manekin Construction who provides services throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

“Ten years ago, we created Velocity Capital with the goal of changing communities with urban infill development,” said Chief Financial Officer Garfield Antonio. “These are all buzzwords. What we really wanted to do was change people’s lives through architecture, through design, through landscaping. We wanted to create a place in the community.

“We cannot change communities waiting for someone else to make the change for us,” Antonio said.

Chuck Renninger, president of the Largo Civic Association, said he has lived in the area for 30 years and has seen a lot of changes during that time, but is looking forward to the redevelopment of Hampton Park.

“This was one of the original malls for this area. We used to shop there all the time,” he said. “Recently, it’s turned on hard times. I’m glad to see the redevelopment because people will have the opportunity to come and shop here again.”

Davis and other officials emphasized the importance of getting small and minority businesses within the county involved in the project as well, being a part of everything from telecommunications, construction, security and painting.

Because of this, the business owners at the event who made up the majority of attendees were instructed on what they needed to do to get involved in the project.

They emphasized the importance of getting a business certified and ways to receive financial help, such as the county-based FSC First who lends $25,000 to $5.5 million to local businesses annually through state and local funding.

Prince George’s County is in the midst of an $8 billion economic growth in Prince George’s County and a county council mandate said that 40% of that must go to small businesses, said State Del. Darryl Barnes (D-25) during the presentation.

If you are prepared, “there is money to be put in your pocket,” Barnes told the business owners in attendance. “If you are prepared, then we are talking about creating a legacy for you and your business.”

Among the business owners at the presentation was Monica Briscoe, vice president of marketing and communications at MD Strategic Consulting.

As a partner with the county, her company is involved in a lot of projects throughout the area and has worked with Velocity Companies in the past.

“We’re looking to do some partnerships with the Hampton Park Project and on the development side we are MBE certified, so we’re trying to do whatever they need on the project,” Biscoe said.

The Hampton Park Project becomes one of several large development projects within the county that are currently in the works such as the Largo Town Center, Southlake and Westphalia as well as big investments that have already been completed such as the MGM National Harbor, Davis and other officials said during the presentation.

“We need to make sure that as we develop ideas, they are the very best products that we can produce can be,” Davis said.

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