Columbia Gateway Innovation District: Alternative Future Visions


The Columbia Gateway Project is a comprehensive report on future development for the Columbia Gateway site in Columbia, MD. This report charts the next steps to enhance the viability and explore the economic possibilities of the area. This report lays out key issues and goals for impending planning efforts. It is a framework that establishes options for the next 25 years and beyond. This report contains three ‘alternatives’ for development: low intensity, medium intensity and high intensity. It also explores the possibility of transforming the area into an “innovation district” which is defined as a spatial geographic model that stimulates economic growth by clustering entrepreneurs, startups, business accelerators and incubators. Key Issues: The landscape of Columbia, MD will continue to shift over the next 20 years. The population will continue to increase and become more diverse. The Columbia Gateway area is one of the last areas available for extensive development within Howard County. In order to keep up with shifting population demands, Howard County will need to develop a unique plan for redeveloping this area in order to create and expand a “work, play, and live” atmosphere. This report outlines some key initiatives, including: Economic Development: Tactics are recommended to encourage business innovation and growth, in order to make the area a leader in 21st century technologies. Particular attention is given to making the area into an innovation district on various levels that would support the area’s growth and economic conditions; Transportation: This report places great emphasis on transit, bike and pedestrian transportation while also improving existing road networks within Columbia Gateway. Each development alternative expounds on what improvements would need to be made to support proposed development within the area; Housing: Suggestions are made to create housing options that appeal to a diverse group of people. The report also provides options for how affordable housing options can be added to the area; Community Design: This report recommends a well-designed a community that includes green spaces, community areas, and more. The plans offer a way to transition the area from an office environment into a livable and recreational environment as well.


Final project for URSP 705 & 706: Community Planning Studio (Summer 2016). School of Architecture Planning & Preservation, University of Maryland, College Park.