Long Reach Village Center
Developed in the 70’s, the Long Reach Village Center (LRVC) was once a hub for residents serving a variety of neighborhood needs. Various civic spaces were developed to support commercial uses and provide focal points for social interaction. With growth of newer commercial centers nearby, and changing market conditions, most of the LRVC experienced disinvestment and high vacancy rates. By 2014, the center faced decline due to increasing vacancies, poor maintenance and security issues. In response, Howard County passed legislation establishing the area as blighted and created a 19.1 acre Urban Renewal Area. As a result, the County purchased several properties, including the center, amounting to approximately 7.7 acres for redevelopment.
Throughout 2015, the County held five community meetings to engage the public in reimagining the LRVC. Over 150 people attended these meetings and provided input used to develop a 2016 Reimagine Long Reach Plan. In 2017, the County partnered with a private development firm to advance an Urban Renewal Project for the LRVC, which was approved by the County Council. Due to numerous acquisition and pre-development challenges, the development firm notified the County in June 2019 that they would no longer pursue redeveloping the LRVC.
After years of challenges, County Executive Calvin Ball is proud to announce a swift short-term renovation and long-term renewal. The goal of creating "A Vibrant Village Center For Today" will be met through a stabilization plan of maintenance, repair, beautification and placemaking. The work is already underway to generate renewed interest and excitement in the hub of Long Reach!
Food Truck Thursdays at Long Reach
As the weather gets warmer, it's the perfect time to gather with friends and enjoy the great tastes of Howard County at Food Truck Thursdays at the Long Reach Village Center. Come out to support our local favorites every Thursday from 5-8 p.m.
Food trucks will come to the village center every week with a variety of vendors to satisfy our every craving. Be sure to check it out!
Long Reach Rising
County Executive Calvin Ball presented his vision for Long Reach Rising in a work session of the Long Reach Community Association on February 18th, 2020.
You can view the presentation video here and the PowerPoint presentation here. The video of the live streamed event is available online. We welcome your feedback on the County's vision for a vibrant village center and invite you to provide your comments below.
Through the Long Reach Rising leasing strategy, the County has welcomed several new tenants that offer services, or are mission focused in Arts & Culture, including:
- African Art Museum of Maryland, one of three in the United States focused exclusively on African art. Founded by Doris Ligon in 1980, the African Art Museum of Maryland is dedicated to the encouragement of broader understanding and awareness of the diverse cultures and artistic expressions of the people of the African continent.
- Andersen-Becker & ManneqART, operated by Lee Andersen. Andersen-Becker Inc, a 25 year old company that produces art clothing designed by Lee Andersen, will be creating a new fabric store and opening their fourth Factory Store in the Long Reach Village Center. They provide internship opportunities for local students and also donate materials to local artists. ManneqART, a 501c3 Non-Profit Organization for Education in the Arts looks to engage a community committed to embracing the arts.
- Roll Up N Dye, a tie-dye studio owned by Erin Cassell, winner of the 2017 Howard County Change Maker Challenge. Roll Up N Dye holds tie-dye parties and facilitates team building workshops for all ages.
- Howard County Arts Council, a longstanding institution in the County devoted to nurturing local artists and arts organizations, furthering the public’s appreciation of the arts, and ensuring that the arts are accessible — regardless of age, ability or economic status.
Through the Long Reach Rising leasing strategy, the County has welcomed several new tenants that offer services, or are mission focused in Education, including:
- Head Start, a program designed to prepare children socially, emotionally, and academically for kindergarten. The new Bauder Education Center will also serve as a family support center that provides wrap around services that include housing, energy and food assistance while their children are receiving a high-quality education that prepares them for kindergarten.
- Every Kid Can Cook, a nonprofit working to improve the mental, academic, emotional and physical well-being of youth through culturally inclusive culinary nutrition education, leadership opportunities and programming.
- Power 52, whose mission is to break the cycle of poverty, unemployment, under employment, and incarceration in our urban communities across the nation through economic empowerment and clean energy access.
- Head Start, programming for early education. Head Start and Early Head Start programs support the comprehensive development of children from birth to age 5, in centers, child care partner locations, and in their own homes. Head Start services include early learning, health, and family well-being.
Through the Long Reach Rising leasing strategy, the County has welcomed several new tenants that offer services, or are mission focused in Economic Empowerment, including:
- Commercial Kitchen offering prep stations and retail space for food businesses such as food trucks, caterers, and local entrepreneurs. In addition to food prep and sales spaces, the commercial kitchen space will offer classroom and community meeting spaces.
- Roving Radish, whose mission is to promote healthy farm to table eating habits while creating a sustainable market for our local farms.
- Blooming Hope Dominican Hair Salon offering hair services for women, men and children, and offer beauty products and accessories.
- Howard International Grocer offering international foods, halal meat, fresh meat, frozen meat, fish, fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, milk, eggs, snacks, and more.
- VM Services offering cellular phones, phone plans, wire transfers and more.
- Vegan Soul Bakery offering one of the broadest selections of vegan food and desserts in the country and is the first of its kind in Columbia.
- Althea’s Almost Famous Tasty Jamaican Food's mission is to cater to the taste of all palates whether carnivore, pescatarian, vegan, or vegetarian by serving some of the best island cuisines using all-natural, fresh, high-quality ingredients in a family-friendly environment.
As part of Long Reach Rising, a commercial kitchen in a portion of the existsing retail space will meet a well-documented need for commercial kitchen stations that can be rented to different types of food businesses on an as-needed basis, including:
- Food Trucks
- Local Entrepreneurs
Existing space will be rehabilitated and improved to create a Long Reach Commercial Kitchen that offers prep stations for food businesses, classroom/educational space, and community meeting space.
Continued beautification of the exterior and shared areas. The following list of projects have either been completed or are in process for future completion:
- Power washing of building walls and soffits;
- Repair of trim and soffits; painting of steel columns;
- Restoration of all exterior lighting and painting and repair of light poles;
- Power washing sidewalks; painting of parking lot striping, curbs and steel bollards;
- Repair of storm drains;
- Cleaning of courtyard drains;
- Trimming of trees, bushes and weeds;
- Painting of wood panels below windows;
- Clean window exteriors at all storefronts;
- Replace canvas awnings;
- Secured an office for the security guard