New Industrial: Manekin, Turnbridge Eye “Liberty”

Excerpt from Maryland Newsletters – Prince George’s Newsletter, Volume 33, Number 12

Next to the Collington Center, a new industrial park is in the making that would bring several million feet of space to the market.

On the 440-acre ‘Willowbrook’ property, partners Manekin LLC and Turnbridge Equities hope to develop three million feet as ‘Liberty Business Park,’ just west of Route 301 near Commerce Drive, in Upper Marlboro. The partners have been making the rounds of civic groups recently, and the City of Bowie as well, building support for a legislative change that would allow industrial, or E-I-A uses, in the existing R-S zone in certain cases.

Owned by a partnership of Toll Brothers and NVHomes, Willowbrook is today approved for over 1,100 houses. The same partnership also owns ‘Locust Hill’ next door, but that property would remain residential. Envisioning Willowbrook as industrial is relatively easy because that was how it was zoned prior to its change to residential. It also lies directly adjacent to the Collington Center, and thus can be accessed from Route 301. Plans from decades ago show Willowbrook as ‘phase two’ of the Collington Park.

Liberty would be about two-thirds the size of the Collington Center, which has 37 buildings, about 4.7 million feet of space, and a 96 percent occupancy rate. Its most recent new resident is Amazon, which bought the former DPI warehouse recently.

The Liberty project’s developers told City of Bowie officials that the park would be about 50 percent devoted to Last Mile users, and that other space could be given over to data centers, manufacturers, and flex space.

The legislation that would make the park possible left a Council committee with majority approval, based on its business impact. Besides generating new tax revenues, the project could also generate about $7 million toward road improvements along Route 301. NAI Michael is the broker in the deal.

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