From left, Lakey Boyd (CA), Howard County Executive Calvin Ball, Greg Fitchitt (Howard Hughes Corp.), Howard County Councilwoman Deb Jung and Steve Maddock (Orthopaedic Associates of Maryland) break ground on the new Lakefront medical services building. (Source: Howard Hughes Corp.)

The Howard Hughes Corp. has broken ground on a four-story, $45.8 million medical office building in the Lakefront District in Downtown Columbia, signifying the next phase in the revitalization of the city’s urban core.

The groundbreaking marks the first major milestone in HHC’s rejuvenation of the Lakefront District, which is poised to serve as the heart of the transformative $5 billion, 30-year plan for Downtown. Future development planned for the District also includes two new community parks, three new residential buildings and a variety of retail offerings.

The four-story, 86,000-square-foot medical office building will rise along the south shore of Lake Kittamaqundi at 10285 Little Patuxent Parkway, adjacent to the former headquarters of The Rouse Company, which is now the home of Whole Foods.

Orthopaedic Associates of Central Maryland will occupy 25 percent of the new building, joining the growing list of Lakefront District tenants including The 3rd, a recently opened nonprofit incubator space and café supporting women-of-color entrepreneurs, and the locally-owned unique dining and entertainment concept The Collective, which will open this winter.

In contrast with larger national trends showing a decline in tenant leasing and profitability since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Downtown Columbia has welcomed more than a dozen new restaurants and retailers. They include Bark Social, Toastique, Banditos, Medium Rare, Blackwall Barn & Lodge, Mighty Quinn’s Barbeque, Smashing Grapes, Jrip Coffee & Croissanterie and Gyusan.

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