Tag Archives: Columbia

Ellicott City, Columbia, Gaithersburg and Rockville MD Named Best Places to Live!

This morning CNN Money announced on the Today Show that Ellicott City, MD and Columbia, MD were the #2 Cities in their yearly list of Best Places to Live. Gaithersburg, MD placed #25 and Rockville, MD placed #31.

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Planning board signs off on Columbia redevelopment

30-year-plan for downtown now in hands of Howard County Council

The county’s planning board Thursday unanimously approved an ambitious, 30-year plan to redevelop downtown Columbia, leaving the future of the planned community’s center in the hands of the County Council.

However, the board issued no opinion on accompanying legislation that would change zoning laws to allow the future development.

Dave Grabowski, chairman of the planning board, said the group felt it could not make a recommendation on the zoning regulation without knowing what the final version of the plan will look like once the council has approved it.

That decision may prevent the planning board from weighing in on the zoning portion of the redevelopment in the future, as the council could vote on that portion when it takes up the redevelopment plan, without waiting for board recommendations.

The plan for downtown Columbia calls for 5,500 new residential units, 5 million square feet of office space and 1.25 million square feet of retail space.

The plan, as proposed by General Growth Properties Inc., would develop downtown Columbia in stages over the course of 30 years.

Council member Calvin Ball, whose district includes part of Columbia, said council members will give consideration to the planning board’s recommendations, but said it was important for the council to examine the development plan and the accompanying zoning changes together.

“Passing on and then moving forward to the other, I’m not sure if that’s the best process … for the public or … for the actual movement in downtown Columbia,” he said.

Source: Columbia Flier, Sarah Breitenbach (9/18/2009)

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Downtown Columbia to lose another gas station

Second gas station to close on Little Patuxent

Owner blames rent hikes from Exxon


Less than three months after an Exxon service station closed on Little Patuxent Parkway, the owner of another Exxon station on the same road has said he will close at the end of July, leaving that major Columbia artery with no gas stations, at least temporarily.

Abid Qureshi, co-owner of the Town Center Exxon at 10141 Little Patuxent Parkway, next to the Sheraton Columbia, said increased rents on the property and fuel prices have forced him and his brother, Amjid, out of business after more than 10 years in that location.

Qureshi declined to reveal how much he pays for rent or fuel, but said he has not been able to find a buyer for his franchise. “The rent is so high that nobody would want to come in here,” he said.

His rent has more than doubled over the last six years, he said. Though he declined to be specific, he said he had lost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“The last six years have been rough,” he said.

On May 7, the Exxon gas station at the corner of Little Patuxent Parkway and Banneker Road closed, and the station remains vacant. Continue reading

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Columbia, MD one of the Best Places for Aging Entrepreneurs to Live

Entrepreneurs don’t retire, they just find a new project.

Over the past decade, baby boomers produced a high rate of entrepreneurial activity, and Dan Stangler, senior analyst at the Kauffman Foundation, says the number of baby boomers starting a business in their traditional retirement years is likely to increase.

In response to that analysis, U.S. News & World Report identified 10 places that it says are the best places for an entrepreneurial baby boomer to retire. It picked the areas because they have an affordable cost of living, proximity to healthcare, fun recreational amenities, and access to information, particularly colleges and university with technology-focused departments.

Here are their 10 best suggestions:

  1. Arlington, Va.
  2. Columbia, Md.
  3. Fargo, N.D.
  4. Fayetteville, Ark.
  5. Fort Collins, Colo.
  6. Knoxville, Tenn.
  7. Lincoln, Neb.
  8. Madison, Wis.
  9. Round Rock, Tex.
  10. West Des Moines, Iowa

Search for homes in Columbia, MD now!

Source: U.S. News & World Report, Emily Brandon (06/29/2009)

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Columbia ranks 7th among “America’s Top 25 Towns to Live Well”

Forbes Magazine evaluated towns on quality of life, business environment and labor force

Columbia, Maryland has been named seventh among “America’s Top 25 Towns to Live Well”, as determined by Forbes Magazine. Columbia ranked high among quality of life factors, such as schools, restaurants and access to music venues. Forbes also noted that venture capital comes to $594 per capita and Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)–defined professionals account for 27% of the labor force, the fourth highest of towns measured.

To evaluate each town – defined as every city, town, borough or Census-designated-place under 100,000 people – Forbes  looked at the following factors:  median income; average commute; distance to highways and airports; per capita venture capital funding; per capita number of small businesses; sole-proprietorships and start-ups; the percentage of the population with bachelor’s degrees or higher; the share of BLS-defined professional-level workers; the percentage of young and educated people, or those ages 25-34 with a bachelor’s degree or higher; the percentage of foreign-born residents with a bachelor’s degree or higher; and the number of restaurants, bars, museums and cultural institutions per capita. Data was provided by ZoomProspector.com, a San Francisco-based consulting firm specializing in corporate relocation.

To read the article in its entirety, visit click here.

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