University of Maryland’s $115M Hotel and Conference Center Project Moves Forward

A planned hotel and conference center project at the University of Maryland could transform College Park into a top college town. Recently, this $115 million project has taken an important step towards the start of construction.

A planned hotel and conference center project at the University of Maryland could transform College Park into a top college town. Recently, the $115 million project took an important step toward the start of construction.

On March 19, the three-member State of Maryland Board of Public Works unanimously approved the declaration of a three-acre parcel of university land as surplus. Last year, the university revealed its plans to sell the parcel, located on the east side of campus, opposite Turner Hall, to the UMD College Park Foundation. This strategy will minimize the university’s exposure to the project.

The full responsibility for the project will be transfered to the foundation. It will develop the new hotel and conference center together with Southern Management Corp. Considered one of the region’s top places to work, Southern Management Corp. was selected as development partner following a Request for Expressions of Interest process. The project is expected to break ground in spring 2015 and could open by fall 2017.

“The hotel and conference center project is a crucial element in the revitalization of our campus community within Prince George’s County,” said Wallace Loh, president of the University of Maryland, in a statement for the press. “I thank the members of the Board of Public Works for their approval so we can move this important project forward.”

The university said it expects the project to encourage redevelopment of the existing downtown College Park business district and have an important economic impact on the entire region. Overall, it will create 1,637 jobs, increase overall economic activity by more than $62 million per year and generate over $4.4 million in state and local tax revenues annually.

Photo credit: University of Maryland