County hires manager for Waldorf urban corridor -- Gazette.Net



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The Charles County commissioners have hired consultant Landis Faulcon to manage the Waldorf Urban Redevelopment Corridor project.

Faulcon, whose tenure with the county began March 31, will manage redevelopment efforts within the 300-acre WURC corridor — which follows Old Washington Road between Leonardtown Road and Acton Lane — and coordinate with local, state and federal agencies to promote the arrival of transit service in the county.

Her salary is $97,961, county spokeswoman Donna Fuqua confirmed via email.

“The WURC project has been one of our priorities since taking office,” commissioners’ President Candice Quinn Kelly (D) said in a county news release. “The project’s vision focuses on transportation initiatives that will improve the quality of life for our citizens, many of whom commute long distances each day. I am confident that Dr. Faulcon will help us continue to move this project forward so the benefits for our citizens are realized.”

“The hiring of Dr. Faulcon really kicks off our efforts to revitalize our Waldorf corridor. The plans are in place, and all I see in the future are great improvements and a restored pride in our history,” commissioners’ Vice President Reuben B. Collins II (D) said in the release.

Faulcon has worked in local government administration for 25 years, including as a revitalization consultant for one of the oldest commercial corridors in Savannah, Ga., the release states.

Prior to that, she administered a $100 million federal “empowerment zone” grant as manager of a joint effort between the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth, Va., aimed at boosting economic development in poor neighborhoods, according to the release.

Faulcon received her bachelor’s in broadcast journalism from Howard University in Washington, D.C., before earning a master’s in urban studies, doctorate in urban services and management, and a certificate of accomplishment as a professional public manager at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va., the release states.

“I’m delighted that we’ve reached this point in our plans for the redevelopment of Waldorf’s main crossroads. Dr. Faulcon is a qualified leader who knows what we wish to accomplish, and I believe she can get it done,” Commissioner Debra M. Davis (D) said in the release.

As envisioned, “Phase One” of the WURC will be centered at the intersection of Old Washington Road and Leonardtown Road and feature up to 659,000 total square feet of mixed-use residential, commercial office and retail space, including a specialty grocer, executive hotel, fitness center and an array of restaurants and taverns.

“Redevelopment will be critical to the future of Charles County, and I look forward to assisting Dr. Faulcon as she begins the task of spearheading the creation of a walkable, mixed-use central Waldorf that will benefit all citizens of Charles County,” Commissioner Ken Robinson (D) said in the release.

A key piece of the project is a planned rapid transit system linking the county to Metro service. It is unclear whether that system ultimately will be light rail or bus rapid transit, but the commissioners have expressed a clear preference for light rail, citing its potential for spurring economic development.

“This is a big step for our project in Waldorf and Dr. Faulcon will lead the way. I’m happy we’ll be working with her to accomplish this significant goal,” Commissioner Bobby Rucci (D) said in the release.

Faulcon was not able to comment.

jnewman@somdnews.com