Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission Studies & Plans
Plan Summary: Mount Rainier Mixed Use Plan Fact Sheet
MUTC Zone Design Standards and Guidelines: Complete Version
The City of Mount Rainier’s vision for the Mixed-Use Town Center Zone, incorporates the existing positive attributes and potential opportunities to create a revitalized mixed-use town center. The M-U-TC’s physical character, land uses, transportation connections, and cultural assets inform the plan vision to transform the area into a walkable, vibrant, and attractive locale for residents and visitors. An analysis of the area considered the streetscapes, the visual composition of buildings, and the unique elements that define Mount Rainier.
Three distinct districts have been identified within the M-U-TC:
RHODE ISLAND AVENUE: The “Boulevard/Gateway”
envisioned as an urban boulevard, characterized by a wide grand spatial enclosure, new development and destination retail with tenants who prefer more exposure.
A CIVIC CENTER / CITY CENTER: The “Civic Center”
envisioned as the new heart of Mount Rainier, with the introduction of a civil green space at the current bus turn-around location in order to create a community-oriented space in front of City Hall and the Mount Rainier library.
UPPER 34 STREET: The “Main Street Neighborhood
is a cultural and neighborhood hub for residents that builds upon the existing Glut Food Co-op grocery store, Joe’s Movement Emporium and other newer businesses. It is the primary focus area for facade improvement and the preferred location for local neighborhood-serving retail tenants.
2. The Historic District
The entire M-U-TC area is contained within the Mount Rainier Historic District, which has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1990. The M-U-TC area contains approximately ninety properties; forty-six are listed on the Maryland Historical Trust’s Inventory of Historic Properties and four of these are Prince George’s County protected historic properties.
The four properties are:
- Charles M. Lightbown Building (3840–3856 34th Street)
- Prince George’s County Bank Building (3800 34th Street)
- Sanitary Grocery Building (3401 Perry Street)
- Eastern Star Building/Ports Hall (3405 Rhode Island Avenue)
Additionally, sixteen properties are “contributing” historic properties to the National Register district. A large number of “contributing” properties constructed within the period of significance (late 1890s to early 1940s) for the Mount Rainier Historic District still retain varying degrees of architectural and historic integrity. The low-scale, one- to three-story mixture of mixed-use residential and commercial structures is a defining characteristic of the Mount Rainier town center area. Detached, closely sited, single-family homes make up the bulk of the structures bordering and surrounding the M-U-TC area.
Most of the commercial buildings in the Mount Rainier Historic District are located in the city’s historic downtown area, which traditionally contained a mixture of both residential and mixed-used buildings, just as it does today.
3. Mount Rainier Urban Green Infrastructure Master Plan
The Mount Rainier Green Infrastructure Master Plan presents a set of tools to be utilized when selecting and implementing projects to improve and reduce urban storm water runoff. Neighborhoods, single blocks, and even single lots can proactively use this document to identify tools and projects that will enhance their individual areas in storm water management. These efforts signal Mount Rainier’s continued commitment to collaboration and leadership on the environment.
Full Plan: Mount Rainier Urban Green Infrastructure Master Plan_Final
4. Architectural Conservation and Overlay Zone
As housing preferences have changed and (re)development pressures have accelerated, the residents of the City of Mount Rainier have expressed concerns about maintaining the character of their neighborhoods and the affordability of their homes while proactively curbing the “mansionization” trend that has affected many communities in Prince George’s County. Residents have noted a particular interest to help ensure that new infill development, additions, and major renovations respect the historic context, architectural character, and scale of the Mount Rainier’s established neighborhoods.
The Prince George’s County District Council created the Architectural Conservation Overlay Zone (ACOZ) tool in 2012 to provide a regulatory framework to preserve and protect the architectural or design character in established communities while promoting appropriate, well-planned development and redevelopment that is consistent with the surrounding neighborhoods and adjoining areas.
The purpose of this project is to preserve and protect the architectural and historic character and scale of the City of Mount Rainier’s single-family neighborhoods.
Detail Project Description: What is ACOZ ?
Project Updates: Stay Informed
5. 3200 Rhode Island Ave Market Study (2009)
- 3200 Block of Rhode Island Ave. Plot Boundary Survey
- 3200 Block of Rhode Island Avenue Site Analysis
Presentation and Event Videos
- Rebranding the Town Center Through Design Presentation Dec 7 2015 by Mount Rainier, Office of Economic Development
- Menkiti Group Presentation – 3300 Rhode Island Ave Development by Menkiti Group
- Mount Rainier Gateway Project -MUTC Revised Public Art Opportunity by Neighborhood Development Company and Streetsense (8/21/15)