Royal Farms – Anderson’s Corners

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:  Royal Farms
LocationLaurel, Maryland
Market: Commercial/Retail
Size: 2.03 acres
Zoning: M-X-T (Mixed Use – Transportation) – Special Exception
Density: 0.06 FAR

Recent Projects

The Challenges

Royal Farms builds and manages over 150 convenience/gas stores throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.  Royal Farms – Anderson’s Corners is located in a developing area in west Laurel off I-95 adjacent to over 900 newly constructed apartments, townhouses and the proposed Konterra Town Center with over 2,000 homes, hotels and over 2 million square feet of commercial, entertainment and office uses.  Providing gas service to customers required special pollution prevention measures to capture any accidental fuel spills.  The project location required development plans to be reviewed and permitted by multiple city, county, state  agencies that often conflicted with each other.  The site had significant grade change from front to back and consisted of mostly wet, non-compactable soils.

The Solution

GLW was tasked with providing planning, engineering, landscaping and forest conservation services for the project.  Our engineers designed an on-site stormwater management system that included a trench drain around the fuel dispenser pad and a clay liner in the micro-bio facility to prevent any accidental fuel overflow from leaving the site.  Soil borings and earthwork calculations were performed at an early stage to allow budgeting for the cost of removing poor soils and importing gravel and other compactable soils.  Careful coordination between site designers and ongoing grading operations of the adjacent apartment development allowed both projects to achieve more balanced sites.  Additionally, GLW’s site design created a plan that met Royal Farms’ required site specifications while still minimizing earthwork and retaining wall costs.

 

The Towns at Westside

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Project Description

  • Client/Builder/Developer: Hailey Development/Ryan Homes
  • Location: Westside Boulevard, Laurel, Maryland
  • Market: Residential – Townhouses
  • Size: 45 Acres
  • Zoning: M-X-T (Mixed-use Transportation)

 

Recent Projects

The Challenges

The Westside Townhouse development is comprised of 54 front-loaded townhouses on private streets and is part of a larger 56.63 acre mixed-use development that also includes apartments, a hotel, and a retail center.  The property was annexed in to the City of Laurel and built on reclaimed land that had been previously mined for sand and gravel.  A large sediment control trap needed for the mining operation had to be enlarged and converted to a sediment control basin. The basin was subsequently converted to a MD-378 pond to treat runoff from the multi-family, public street and townhouse developments. Designing sewer and storm drain systems for the townhouse parcel was especially challenging because gravity flow of the systems required detail coordination of grading and sewer and storm drain design to overcome a ridgeline that ran through the center of the property.

 

The Solution

GLW provided full entitlement processing services from rezoning to annexation exhibits to site plan approval; and full engineering services including subdivision platting, site grading, utility design, public road design, ADA compatibility, sediment control and stormwater management (SWM) and construction permitting.

Site grading of the apartment and townhouse parcels was designed early in the development process to allow sewer and storm drain construction for the adjacent apartments to move forward.  Sewer and storm drain alignments and profiles were designed to minimize extra depth trenching to keep construction costs on budget.

Additionally, site grading and SWM focused on designing a submerged gravel wetland that could handle both environmental site design (ESD) and 100 year attenuation for downstream flooding for most of the property.

GLW provided detailed coordination with State Highway Administration (SHA) and Prince George’s County Department of Public Works and Transportation for an ongoing Rte 95 interchange construction that included a wholesale re-alignment of roadways that were adjacent and provided access to the property.

 

Arbor Terrace Fulton

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:  Hailey Develoment/Ryan Homes
Location:  Scaggsville Road, Fulton, Maryland
Market: Senior Living
Size: 3.0 Acres
Zoning: CCT (Community Center Transition)

Recent Projects

The Challenges

Arbor Terrace Fulton is a 75,000 square foot, 100 bed, assisted living and dementia care facility located on 3 acres adjacent to the Maple Lawn development in Fulton, Maryland.  Pre-development site conditions required storm drainage to connect on either side of the property to exiting pipes on adjacent properties.  Site access and sight distance were major design considerations when locating the building and designing road improvements to MD Route 216, a major arterial road.  Fire access around the entire building was required with only one access point permitted from the main access road, Scaggsville Road (MDRoute 216).

 

The Solution

GLW was tasked with taking the project from vacant land, through entitlements to construction permits and surveying.  Early in the development process, GLW identified the need for off-site storm drain easements to be granted by the Howard County Public Schools and Maple Lawn Farm owners and their tenant, Harris Teeter, or the project could not move forward.  Having excellent working relationships with both land owners, GLW negotiated the easements successfully.

Road improvements to the main access road, Scaggsville Road (MD Rte. 216) needed to be coordinated with adjacent land owners, engineers and developers to solve drainage, road alignment and sight distance design issues.  GLW took the lead in circulating proposed plans and coordinated the final design.

Fire access for a ladder truck to circulate around the entire building was accomplished by using reinforced turf  and bollards that will access an emergency access driveway in the event of a fire.  This design technique also reduced the amount of impervious surface while still providing fire safety.

 

Germantown Park

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:   Beazer Homes
Location:  Germantown, Maryland
Market: Residential Townhouses
Size8.5 acres
Zoning: RT-12.5
Density:  104 Townhouses (13 MPDU’s), 12.2 DU/Acre

The Challenges

Germantown Park was the redevelopment of an outdated and under utilized1980’s retail shopping center into a thriving townhome community.  After our client determined there was a strong market demand for townhouses, the next step was to rezone the property from C-1 (commercial) to RT-15 (townhouses,15 units/acre).   To better compete with nearby neighborhood resales our client wanted to include numerous site amenities.  Stormwater design would need to meet current ESD requirements as well as continuing to connect to an existing large pond shared with a convenience store on the corner.  Additionally, site design would need to incorporate an existing adjacent cemetery and steep slopes down to roads fronting the property.

The Solution

GLW was brought in to provide rezoning, planning, engineering, landscape architecture and surveying services.  Our local jurisdictional planning experience was needed to  successfully argue that rezoning the property to allow townhouses would create an improved buffer and be more compatible to the surrounding residential neighborhoods than a shopping center.

Our site designers achieved the desired density and included many passive recreational amenities and a central village green that serves as a community gathering place.  An extensive interconnected sidewalk system links the residents to the amenities throughout the community and to an off-site pedestrian system and public transportation.  The green space provided throughout the project adds up to 4.5 acres or 53.3% of the total property.  Purposeful stormwater design resulted in small micro-bio ponds that were shaped to fit within open space and are landscaped to be part of the amenity package within the community.

 

Maple Lawn Farms Community Center

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:   G & R Maple Lawn
LocationFulton, Howard County, Maryland
Market: Community Building and Fitness Center
Size5.01 Acres
Zoning: MXD-3
DensityNA

The Challenges

The Maple Lawn Community Center is a 14,000 square foot facility, designed to be the central focal point and hub for the Maple Lawn residents.  It offers a host of indoor community rooms and workout spaces, a five acre park that surrounds the center and includes a formal garden, tennis courts, basketball courts, a playground, swimming pool, kids pool, picnic pavilion and a two-acre open field for active recreational use.  GLW’s role was to design a facility that incorporated this diverse recreational program (courts, pools, etc.) with onsite stormwater management. Further, to utilize landscaping and site furniture throughout the grounds to address user comfort, and to artfully blend the outdoor hardscapes with building structures.

The Solution

GLW’s solution for the Community Center design was to create a graceful layout of recreational spaces, logical pedestrian circulation, integrated grading and stormwater management systems, and beautiful landscaping.  GLW’s circulation plan used a logical wayfinding design to bring people from parking areas to building to recreation areas.  Lawns, gardens, trees, pergolas, and benches helped create comfortable microclimates for people traversing from area to area. For example deciduous trees provide shade in the hot humid summer months, but also allow for light and warmth during the colder months.  Stormwater management facilities were planted appropriately to create a landscaped amenity while still allowing drainage to seep back into the aquifer. The impervious hardscape surfaces required careful, detailed site grading to direct drainage into numerous stormwater micro-bio facilities to keep these areas dry, safe, usable and clean.  Water-loving native plants were used to create visual amenities that blended the micro-bios into the overall landscape.  Ultimately the final design has a logical and visually attractive layout that allows comfortable, purposeful use of the recreation complex.

 

One Merriweather and Two Merriweather

Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:   Howard Hughes Corporation
Location:  Columbia, Howard County, MD
Market: Mixed-Use Office, Retail, Restaurant
Size6.3 acres
Zoning: Downtown Columbia, Crescent Neighborhood
Density:  322,036 Square Feet Office, 24,722 Square Feet Retail and Restaurant

The Challenges

One and Two Merriweather is a mixed use development located in the southeast quadrant of the Broken Land Parkway and Little Patuxent Parkway intersection in Downtown Columbia. GLW was charged with providing engineering and minor surveying services that would assist in establishing the guiding Final Development Plan, create the urban road grid network and necessary infrastructure as well as ultimately developing and processing the Site Development Plans through the County’s new Downtown Columbia review process. Although the project is part of the redevelopment of Columbia, the site was not fully developed and had only been partially mass graded previously. The site was developed as two mixed-use, retail/restaurant and office buildings, each on its’ own parcel. A standalone precast parking structure was constructed on yet another separate parcel to serve development. Challenges for GLW engineers included navigating the Downtown Columbia review process, mitigating impacts the adjacent sloping streets had on the proposed urban buildings and streetscapes, and providing required stormwater management on such a dense site.

The Solution

GLW was brought in to provide, engineering, surveying and Howard County processing knowledge from the initial planning, Final Development Plan, stage through the Site Development Plan stage and construction coordination. The incorporation of an extensive stormwater management program was designed to be integral within the landscape/hardscape. The stormwater management system was comprised of a cistern or vault that was dewatered through a pipe connection to a micro bio-retention facility located in the adjacent open space east of the project, a green roof on the Two Merriweather Building, pervious paving elements connecting all structures, and a series of cascading micro bio-retention facilities between the parking structure and Two Merriweather that also included a pedestrian plaza. A boardwalk was placed over the cascading micro bio-retention facilities to be able to provide handicap accessibility between the parking structure main level exit down to the proposed retail/restaurants located in the lower floor of the Two Merriweather building. The grading for the site was coordinated with the adjacent finished floor elevations as determined by the Architect and the grades of the adjacent roadways. All the while, maintaining handicap accessibility between the parking structure exit and the retail/restaurant entrances of both buildings.

The Metropolitan

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:   Kettler
LocationColumbia, Howard County, MD
Market: Mixed-Use Residential, Retail, Restaurant
Size4.6 acres
Zoning: Downtown Columbia, Warfield Neighborhood
Density:  380 Residential Units, 13.500 Square Feet Retail and Restaurant

The Challenges

The Metropolitan is a mixed-use project located in Downtown Columbia, just south of the Columbia Mall. It includes a 6-story residential building with retail and restaurants at street level. The entire building wraps around a precast parking structure. Although the project is part of the Columbia redevelopment, the site was not fully developed and only partially graded. GLW was charged with providing surveying, engineering and planning services to create an urban road grid network and other required infrastructure. GLW also developed and processed the Site Development Plans using Howard County’s new Downtown Columbia review system. The challenges for GLW planners included following the recently enacted Downtown Columbia legislation that created new site development requirements. The challenges for our engineers included addressing the relationship of steeply sloped streets to a large urban building and its impact to pedestrian and vehicular access, and streetscape frontage design.

The Solution

GLW was brought in to provide engineering, surveying and plan processing knowledge to guide the initial planning, develop Final Development Plans and Site Development Plans, as well as construction coordination. The extensive stormwater management design integrated seamlessly within the design of the project’s hardscape and landscape. The stormwater management design met all regulatory requirements but also created an educational opportunity for Howard County officials to observe how storm water flows and can be managed. GLW coordinated detailed site grading with the project’s architects to align finished floor elevations to the exterior grades, adjacent sidewalks and roadways. GLW’s site grading also successfully created pedestrian connectivity and handicap accessibility between the parking structures and nearby retail restaurants.

Maple Lawn Farms

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:  Greenebaum Enterprises
LocationMaple Lawn Boulevard, Fulton, Howard County, Maryland
Market: Mixed Use – Residential, Retail
Size605.3 acres
Zoning: MXD-3
Density3,140 residential units (single family attached and detached), over 1.7 million square feet of office space, and over 181,000 square feet of retail.

Recent Projects

The Challenges

Maple Lawn Farms is a mixed-use community strategically located between Columbia and Silver Spring, Maryland next to Route 29, between MD Rte. 216 and Johns Hopkins Road. It was designed to be a “smart growth” community where residents live within walking distance of shopping and dining, work and recreational activities.  Maple Lawn Farms had long been a working farm that was to be developed conceptually as a Traditional Neighborhood Development within a phased mixed-use subdivision. This early planning was critical to establish project densities and a framework for a business district, where the majority of the office and retail areas would be located, and its relationship to five residential neighborhoods to be built around it. Maple Lawn would go through the longest Planning Board approval process to date, taking into consideration, the many concerns of the adjacent subdivisions, neighbors and regulatory agencies. In the end, the project’s approved Comprehensive Sketch Plan established twelve construction phases and the amount of development that could occur in each. The site had a number of physical features to consider, among them, a PEPCO right-of-way, the Hammond Branch of the Little Patuxent River, and variable topography.  Of particular concern for the GLW team was that the planning, design and subsequent construction had to allow for the farming operations to continue on land to be developed in later phases of the project.

The Solution

GLW has extensive experience navigating through the Howard County entitlement process. In 1996, GLW, along with a team of design professionals, began the process of land planning and engineering to create a new town community called Maple Lawn that wove together a fabric of various types of market driven residential dwellings with required services and amenities for not only its residents but also neighboring communities.  The various components of Maple Lawn are interconnected by an extensive pathway system within a dedicated public open space of over 187 acres. Our designers crafted open spaces with appropriate siting of stormwater management facilities, sensitive treatment of environmental areas (steep slopes and stream valleys), and passive and active recreational facilities such as plazas and squares, playgrounds, and a dog park. A community recreation center was located as a central focal point and included a 14,000 sf meeting facility and a 5 acre park with formal gardens, a fountain, tennis and basketball courts, playground, picnic pavilion and open recreation space.

Potomac Highlands

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:  Winchester Homes
LocationPotomac, Montgomery County, MD
Market: Residential – Townhouses
Size: 5.41 Acres
Zoning: R-90 –  MPDU Optional Method
Density: 4.25 DU/Acre

Recent Projects

The Challenges

Potomac Highlands was historically an old farm property that had become mostly forested over the years with significantly steep slopes rising up over 80’ directly from Seven Locks Road to the rear of the property. The adjacent properties to the north and south are fully developed townhouse communities along with pristine forested area of Cabin John Park to the east. The dramatic grade changes on-site created significant site access challenges and protection of the surrounding communities and important adjacent environmental features would be required.  

The Solution

GLW provided full entitlement processing services from concept planning, preliminary plan through site plan approval; landscape architecture/design; and full engineering services including subdivision platting, site grading, utility design, public road improvement design, ADA access, forest conservation, sediment control and stormwater management (SWM) design/approval.

After a detailed analysis of the complex site conditions we developed a creative access entry road alignment and interdependent multi-level retaining wall system that provided a safe vehicular and pedestrian access to the site from Seven Locks Road. This also created a dramatic site entry feature for the project. The use of curved retaining walls in combination with decorative native stone provided an appealing and welcoming entry that maximized the site’s elevation as an effective selling point for the views and prominence of the townhouse units at the site. Our engineers designed state of the art ESD (Environmental Site Design) stormwater management through the use of creative mico-bioretention to provide maximum stormwater management treatment and protect the sensitive downstream watershed.  

Shipley’s Grant

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Project Description

Client/Builder/Developer:  Bozzuto Group, Inc.
LocationEllicott City, Howard County, MD
Market: Mixed Use – Residential and Retail
Size: 58.6 Acres
Zoning: R-A-15 & B-1
Density: 474 Town homes, 32,446 Square Foot Restaurant & Retail Center

Recent Projects

The Challenges

Shipley’s Grant is a mixed-use development located adjacent to major highways; MD Route 100, Snowden River Parkway, and Waterloo Road (MD Route 108).  The site was developed as a multi-phase, Traditional Neighborhood Design (TND zone) townhouse community with a 3.4-acre shopping center and two recreation/community centers.  Challenges for GLW planners and engineers included traffic noise from vehicles on Route 100, a stream and associated buffers that run through the center of the property, sensitive preservation of the exiting farm house and cemetery, and extensive  road improvements required for Waterloo Road and Snowden River Parkway.

The Solution

GLW’s role was brought in to provide environmental, engineering, surveying and landscape design services from the initial planning stage through construction phases.  The property was planned as a high density development that required careful site design and engineering to ensure the closely connected neighborhoods could be coordinated and constructed in overlapping phases required for the various builders and market demands.

During the entitlement process, GLW assisted in two separate rezoning petitions and construction permits which were obtained from multiple agencies including Howard County, Maryland State Highway Administration, and Maryland Department of the Environment.  During the 15-year lifespan of the project, GLW was able to successfully adapt the overall plan as market conditions dictated, allowing our client/developer flexibility to change land uses and multiple builder and unit types. These changes were navigated through the regulatory agencies with no negative impacts to our client’s original vision for the project.