Reimagining Wilmer's Park


Wilmer’s Park is a “80-acre parcel containing the ruins of a dance hall, motel, ranch house, covered stage, baseball and football fields. As a major stop on the Chitlin Circuit, Wilmer’s Park opened its doors to African-American musicians, entertainers, athletes and fans from the early 1950s through the late 1960s. Arthur Wilmer used his experience and connections developed as the owner of a night club in Washington, D. C. to bring both popular acts and up-and-coming performers to rural Prince George’s County; the bandstand at Wilmer’s Park showcased everyone from Duke Ellington and Otis Redding to the Temptations, Patti La Belle, and a young Stevie Wonder. The former tobacco farm played an important role in exposing emerging musicians to local African Americans during a time of segregation.” The park has been closed for 10+ years and the purpose of this project is to transform Wilmer’s Park for the residents of Brandywine or nearby communities. For this project, students work in teams of three to design a master plan along with an individual detailed site plan. The design program for these plans came from the residents’ comments from community engagement workshops, notes from Councilman Harrison’s interview, important stakeholders, the field trip, and guest lectures. The master plan does not include all 80 acres of the park and often identifies a phasing plan for the entire project.


Final project for LARC:340 Site Planning and Design Studio (Fall 2022). University of Maryland, College Park.