A look at Waldorf’s planned new event and public meeting space
On behalf of the Charles County Government, Crossroads Consulting Services developed the Market and Economic Analysis for a Proposed New Multi-Purpose Civic Center in Waldorf, a study to assess the market and financial feasibility of a public meeting and events facility in downtown Waldorf. The facility is planned to provide space for public meetings and events, serve as a dynamic urban center connected to light rail transit and promote the revitalization of the Waldorf Urban Redevelopment Corridor, also known as downtown Waldorf.
Original recommendations included a building to accommodate between 1,670 and 2,000 guests in a banquet setting, or up to 3,750 seats in a graduation or concert setting. Since the release of the civic center analysis, the department collaborated with Crossroads Consulting to refine the building program. Refining the plan included providing the most cost-effective development option and aligning the facility plan with local demand. The department met with elected officials and county staff to discuss the facility’s impact and potential customers. There has been ongoing collaboration between key stakeholders in the Waldorf Urban Redevelopment Corridor, such as the Waldorf Jaycees Community Center, the Old Waldorf School Foundation and all private-sector property owners who may be directly impacted by the facility.
The county’s focus is now on the feasibility of the facility’s location, a 6-acre county-owned parcel accommodating the Waldorf Jaycees Community Center and Old Waldorf School Foundation buildings. The plan is to provide a civic campus where the three facilities would coexist, all supported by a parking structure. The building program envisioned the parking structure to hold 630 to 760 parking spaces.
The civic center analysis shows the possibility of the center providing a space for events from concerts and sporting events to business conferences, consumer shows and trade shows. The space will also host smaller functions such as corporate and civic meetings or trainings, and social events such as wedding receptions, family reunions and parties.
The center will potentially employ seven to eight full-time employees, as well as generate economic activity. Local lodging, food and beverage establishments, gas stations and convenience stores often benefit from civic centers. The center could capitalize on existing and planned tourism efforts to bring more individuals to the county and enhance the county’s appeal as a destination.
A private architecture and engineering firm is preparing a draft small area plan that shows alternative building and siting configurations. The plan’s findings will help refine the capital cost estimates contained in the analysis and allow the department to determine their next steps moving forward. Graphics of the plan will be available online at www. MeetCharlesCounty.com.
Visit www.MeetCharlesCounty.com for information about the civic center analysis or the Economic Development Department. Visit www. MeetCharlesCounty.com/ Waldorf-Urban-Redevelopment-Corridor/ for information about the Waldorf Urban Redevelopment Corridor revitalization.
Darrell Brown is the director of the Charles County Economic Development Department.