Local Commmunities

Because of the University of Maryland's suburban location between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, and its easy access to numerous forms of public transportation, University of Maryland students live throughout the metropolitan area. In addition to the approximately 12,000 students who live on campus, thousands of others live close to campus within walking distance or a short ride on Shuttle-UM. The descriptions below will introduce you to some of our local communities. Please note that this is a representative selection of communities and is not intended to describe all of the many communities in the metropolitan area.

Each community's description on the following web pages contains a link to GoogleMaps, where in addition to maps of various scales, you can search for "Nearby" businesses and other local services. We also suggest that you compare communities and neighborhoods using HomeFair. This useful website permits you to retrieve "City Reports" that compare communities by demographics, cost of living, education/health, and major employers.

While we offer basic information about various communities, each community's web site will contain the most current and detailed material. In our community listings, we have also attempted to give basic approximations of the total distance from campus. This distance will vary, however, depending on what side of the city you reside in. In addition to considering distance from campus, it is useful to approximate your actual commute time to and from campus whether you are walking, bicycling, driving, or taking public transportation.

The University of Maryland is located in the City of College Park within Prince George's County, Maryland; a diverse region, located in the heart of the Baltimore/Washington corridor. Prince George's County borders Washington, D.C. and is 37 miles south of the Baltimore city limits. Prince George's County is large, encompassing almost 500 square miles. It has an urban atmosphere with many scenic and peaceful areas to live, work, and relax. Learn all about our county at:

Though most of College Park is within walking distance to the campus, it is well served by public transportation. Metrorail's Green Line serves the College Park/University of Maryland and Greenbelt Stations. The MARC Commuter Rail Station, located on the back side of College Park Metrorail Station, is on the Camden Line, providing commuter service between Baltimore's Camden Station and Union Station in Washington, D.C. Please visit the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority Bus webpage.

Shuttle-UM provides free, frequent service from the College Park Metrorail station to the campus. The areas between the campus and the College Park Metrorail Station are well served by the N.I.T.E. Ride security transportation service.

You will find a great variety of retail shopping, hotel accommodations, and restaurants in College Park. The major shopping districts are:

  • Downtown College Park, 7100-7500 Baltimore Avenue
  • Berwyn Neighborhood Commercial District, Berwyn Road
  • Hollywood Commercial District, Rhode Island Avenue & Edgewood Road
  • College Park Marketplace, 4700 Cherry Hill Road
  • Route 1 Corridor, Baltimore Avenue between Paint Branch Parkway and I-495
College Park is served by the Prince George's County Police Department, District 1. University-affiliated properties are also served by the University of Maryland Police Department.

Where to Live in College Park

College Park officers a wide range of neighborhoods and types of housing. Students live in apartments, fraternity and sorority houses, rooms in private homes, and "student homes" in which several students share a house. Rents in College Park are generally higher than in surrounding communities because of proximity to the University. Street parking can be difficult.

College Park consists of eleven communities, each with a unique character. The percentage of owner-occupied verses renter-occupied housing varies considerably among the neighborhoods. Each neighborhood is briefly profiled below

Autoville/Cherry Hill
This neighborhood is located on the same side of Route 1 as the campus, just south of I-495. It consists of 118 mostly detached homes, 81% owner occupied and 19% renter occupied. It has a neighborhood park and is in close proximity to shopping, but is not very pedestrian and bicycle friendly. The Seven Springs Village apartment complex is home to many students and is served by Shuttle-UM's Seven Springs Apartments route.

One of College Park's oldest and most historic neighborhoods, Berwyn consists of nearly 400 homes that are 69% owner occupied and 31% renter occupied. It has a eclectic mix of architectural styles and a small commercial area with several unique shops.

Calvert Hills
Adjacent to the Metrorail and MARC Stations, Calvert Hills consists of 459 housing units, about ¾ of which are one-unit detached. Housing is 60% owner occupied and 40% renter occupied. In addition to numerous professionals who enjoy an easy commute via Metrorail and MARC, many students live in this neighborhood within easy walking distance of the campus.

College Park Estates/Yarrow
This upscale neighborhood consists of 100% single-family homes, 91% of which are owner occupied. Housing types and styles include ranch, colonial, and split foyer. College Park Estates/Yarrow is known for its attractive yards.

Crystal Springs/Patricia Court
Consisting of 183 one-unit detached houses, this residential neighborhood is home to many students. It is 61% owner occupied and 39% renter occupied. Many students walk across University Boulevard to the campus along informal footpaths.

Daniels Park/Branchville
North of Berwyn and on the opposite side of Route 1 from the campus, this area primarily includes one-unit detached homes (81%), which are 66% owner occupied and 34% renter occupied. Metrobus and Shuttle-UM serve this neighborhood via Rhode Island Avenue.

College Park's largest neighborhood, Hollywood is immediately south of I-495 and close to the Greenbelt MetroRail and MARC Stations. It consists of over 1,200 one-unit detached homes that are 85% owner occupied and 15% renter occupied.

Located across Route 1 from the campus, Lakeland was designated an Urban Renewal Area in 1970 and received HUD funds to improve its substandard housing. Today Lakeland's homes predominantly high-density multifamily and townhouses. The neighborhood is 14% owner occupied and 86% renter occupied. Renters are families, seniors, and students.

Old Town
The Old Town historic district contains original structures form the Calvert family estate dating from the late Victorian period. It consists of a mix of one-unit detached and small to medium-size multi-unit buildings, with 22% being owner occupied and 78% being renter occupied. While conversions of single-family houses to group rentals is a trend throughout the city, it is particularly prevalent in Old Town. Old Town is across Route 1 from Downtown College Park and the campus and is home to fraternity and sorority houses. Old Town has issues typical of neighborhoods located near large universities, particularly where long-term residents live next door to fraternities, sororities or student group houses. Neighborhood residents cite problems often associated with large groups of students; noise and litter, vandalism, houses in need of repair, and lack of off-street parking/parking on lawns. Efforts are underway to address these issues, and Old Town is home to many students who enjoy easy pedestrian/bike access to the campus plus use of N.I.T.E. Ride.

College Park's northernmost neighborhood, Sunnyside is just outside I-495 and adjacent to the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center. Its homes are 100% one-unit detached and 97% owner occupied. Public transit to the University is limited.

Berwyn Heights (map)
The Town of Berwyn Heights consists of nearly 3,000 residents who live in 1,050 single-family homes. Most students who live here share homes with several students. It is a quiet neighborhood, just east of Route 1. Many students walk or bike to campus.

Greenbelt (map) Developed as a planned community in the 1930's, Greenbelt offers a wide variety of housing options from townhomes, garden-style apartments, and private developments. It is known for its system of inner courtyards, numerous shopping centers, interior walkways, and its close proximity to the University via Route 193, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, and public transportation via Metro and MARC. There is also Shuttle-UM service that goes throughout the city. There is not a shuttle that runs to the Greenbelt Metro Station.

Hyattsville (map)
Located south of College Park, Hyattsville is a smart growth community. It has a "small town atmosphere" with a population of 24,657 and a total of 6,030 housing units. It is close to campus and easily accessible with public transportation, including Shuttle-UM's Silver Spring Metro and University Town Center routes, Metrorail and Metrobus, TheBus, Amtrak, and MARC. The area's appeal includes its affordability, close proximity to Washington, D.C., shopping areas, and recreational facilities.

University Park (map)
Adjacent to the campus, University Park is a small, quiet, tree-lined community of 915 single-family homes and 2,300 residents. It has a traditional "small town" atmosphere and a strong sense of community. Numerous faculty and staff live in University Park. There are a limited number of homes for rent, which can be shared by several students.

Riverdale Park (map)
Located east of Route 1 about 2 miles closer to Washington, D.C. than University Park, Riverdale Park is an economically and culturally diverse community of about 5,000 residents. There are four apartment complexes and numerous single-family homes that date from the late19th century to the present. Riverdale is connected to the campus by the F4 and F6 Metrobus routes, which come right through the campus and also serve the College Park Metrorail Station. Prince George's County TheBus Route 14 travels from Riverdale Park to the College Park Metrorail station, where it meets Shuttle-UM.

Adelphi (map)
Adjacent to the campus' west side is the Adelphi neighborhood, which includes several garden apartment complexes and numerous single-family homes. Many students live in this community, within easy walk, bike, or commute via the Shuttle-UM's Adelphi route. The C8 Metrobus serves Adelphi and travels to campus and the College Park Metrorail Station. Adelphi's diverse community provides many opportunities for living, shopping, and dining.

Langley Park (map)
Less than a mile west of the campus, Langley Park is a 0.8 square-mile area bounded by the Montgomery-Prince George's County line on the west, University Boulevard on the south, and Northwest Branch on the north and east. Its population of 20,000 consists predominantly of immigrants from many countries. It is a multicultural neighborhood consisting of apartments, townhouses, and single-family homes in relatively high density. Langley Park is well served by Shuttle-UM's Silver Spring Metro  route and by the J4, C2/C4, and F8 Metrobus routes.

Beltsville (map)
Located along the Route 1 Corridor, Beltsville is an urban/suburban city that is approximately 15-30 minutes away from campus. The city sits between Greenbelt, Adelphi, College Park, and Laurel, in Prince George's County. Beltsville is a community comprised of more urban-esque apartments and shopping communities, as well as a recent increase in townhomes and single-family luxury homes. Beltsville (and it's neighbor, Laurel) is also home to a large portion of the area's once-burgeoning tech industry, including businesses such as Digex and Siemens, located in the Ammendale Business Park. With a population of 15,690, it is accessible via public transportation through Metrobus and MARC. Beltsville is home to many of the University's students, as well as families, and single professionals.

Landover (map)
Landover is approximately 20-25 driving time minutes from campus via I-495. It is also just 12 minutes outside of Washington, D.C. and is home to the Washington Redskins' stadium, FedEx Field. Adjacent to FedEx Field is the Wayne K. Curry Sports and Learning Complex. This complex integrates a learning theme with a "state of the art" athletic training and competition venue for area athletes and caters to the recreational needs of area residents. Landover provides easy access to attractions including the Publick Playhouse, Six Flags America, Watkins Park, and the Northampton Slave Quarters Archaeological site.

New Carrollton (map)
Located in central Prince George's County, New Carrollton is a residential community, with several shopping centers. It is an area with over 12,000 residents and numerous styles of homes, condominiums, and apartment complexes. It is served by Metrobus F4/6 that comes directly to campus, Amtrak, MARC Penn Line and is accessible to the Capital Beltway, I-95, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, and U.S. Route 50.

Silver Spring (map)
Located in Montgomery County, Silver Spring offers a variety of housing options in both older neighborhoods and newer developments. It has apartment complexes of all sizes and styles. It offers a variety of recreational facilities, parks, golf courses, and libraries. It is a sprawling residential and business community with a population of 76,540. Silver Spring is home to many diverse restaurants and shopping areas. Shuttle-UM's Silver Spring route connects to the Silver Spring Metrorail Station (Red Line) to the campus. The Metrobus J4 route and numerous routes of Montgomery County Ride-On also serve Silver Spring well.

Takoma Park (map)
Takoma Park is less than five miles from the university and has a population of approximately 17,000. Located in Montgomery County, Takoma Park is accessible via public transportation on Metrobus F2, F4/6, and J4 routes; Metrorail Takoma Station on the Red Line; and Montgomery County Ride-On. In addition to offering unique shops and restaurants, the city of Takoma Park has many wooded trails and parks.

Silver Spring (map)
Located in Montgomery County, Silver Spring offers a variety of housing options in both older neighborhoods and newer developments. It has apartment complexes of all sizes and styles. It offers a variety of recreational facilities, parks, golf courses, and libraries. It is a sprawling residential and business community with a population of 76,540. Silver Spring is home to many diverse restaurants and shopping areas. Shuttle-UM's Silver Spring route connects to the Silver Spring Metrorail Station (Red Line) to the campus. The Metrobus J4 route and numerous routes of Montgomery County Ride-On also serve Silver Spring well.

Washington, D.C (map)
Washington D.C., the nation's capital, is a large metropolitan area with a wide variety of living options. It is just over half the size of the United Kingdom with a population of approximately 12.5 million people. Washington, D.C. is rich in cultural activities and history. In fact, the nation's capital is commonly known as a "community with several communities" with over 120 neighborhoods in which to live. Well-known neighborhoods for living and fun are Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Adams Morgan, Cleveland Park/Woodley Park, Capitol Hill, Glover Park, and Foggy Bottom. In comprehending and locating neighborhoods in the greater D.C. area, it is important to know that it is divided into four quadrants-Northwest, Northeast, Southwest, and Southeast. Since it is such a vast area, sources for locating housing include the Washington City Paper, the Washington Post, and the Washington Times. Schools located in the District include Howard University, Catholic University, Georgetown University, American University, Gallaudet University, and George Washington University.

In general, housing in this area tends to be more expensive. However, there are rent regulations that mandate that rent increases must be within the current rate of inflation. It also mandates that a landlord must justify any other increases. Washington, D.C. has something for everyone including numerous restaurants with cuisine from all around the world, well known state-of-the art museums and performing arts; great shopping and nightlife; and an assortment of parks and recreational facilities. Washington, D.C. is easily accessible via public transportation to campus from the Metrorail Green Line. It has access to all six Metrorail lines and an extensive Metrobus system that connects with both Maryland and Virginia.

Laurel (map)
Laurel, located between Baltimore and Washington, D.C., is a suburban area with a "small town" atmosphere at its core. Laurel is situated so that its borders cross three counties -- Prince George's, Anne Arundel, and Howard. A wide range of housing options are available and tend to be somewhat less costly than housing closer to the University. Laurel's city center is home to small, unique shops and eateries, while large suburban-style shopping centers also abound. Laurel is easily accessible to campus via public transportation. Metrobus routes 87, 88, 89, 89M, and Connect A Ride buses run throughout Laurel; its Route G serves the campus and the College Park Metrorail Station. Laurel is also served by the Laurel Racetrack and Laurel MARC stations. By car, Laurel is accessible via Route 1, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, and I-95.