The Columbia Flier Building will become The Source, a 65,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art, LEED-certified community center equipped with basketball courts, game rooms and other amenities. (Photo courtesy of the Howard County Government)

HOWARD COUNTY, MD — The Columbia Flier Building will be converted into a community center with basketball courts, game rooms and more. The building closed its doors in 2011 and was bought by the county in 2014.

The building has had a few different uses in recent times, but now will be known as The Source, a 65,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art, LEED-certified community center. The Source will feature a 20,000-square-foot gymnasium with four basketball courts, a food hall, video game and other game rooms, a recording studio, computer access and Wi-Fi service, tutoring, arts engagement, mentorship programs and employment resources.

“Now, more than ever, our young people and their families are voicing the desire for safe and inclusive spaces with access to an abundance of resources, programs and services. Our beloved Columbia Flier building will be transformed into a multipurpose space called The Source,’ that will boast a bold, new, and modern design while memorializing and honoring this iconic building. CCC’s community programs and youth programs, like PUSH & STAND, will finally have a place to grow and prosper,” said Erika Chavarria, executive director of the Columbia Community Care.

The Source also will offer space for resident businesses and organizations to offer emergency medical, mental health and social services, daycare services with dual immersion focus to address gaps around bilingualism, and a community garden. The new center, which will be constructed and operated by Columbia Concepts, will create at least 100 new jobs.

“The Source will be more than a place where local students from surrounding neighborhoods can hang out; it will be a hub where they can come together, engage, inspire one another and be inspired. It will be a difference maker,” said Brian Kim with Columbia Concepts.

In 2023, Howard County Executive Calvin Ball launched YEP!, an initiative that offers grants to nonprofits that support youth with local programming and mentorship opportunities. He also said he plans to set aside additional funding in his budget to support the program.

“I’m excited for the teens who live in the Downtown Columbia neighborhoods to have access to these great after-school activities. I’ve been requesting the community center for years and I’m so thrilled that it will soon be a fixture in the social lives of our young people,” said Deb Jung, chair of the Howard County Council.

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