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& Paint it BLUE Gazette-Star Musicians and more descend on PGCC this Saturday. B-1 SERVING SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY COMMUNITIES DAILY UPDATES ONLINE Thursday, September 19, 2013 25 cents Shootings put spotlight back on training Officials stress importance of security preparations in wake of Navy Yard tragedy n BY JAMIE ANFENSON-COMEAU AND CHASE COOK STAFF WRITERS In the wake of a mass shooting Monday that resulted in the deaths of 12 people at Washington Navy Yard and the shooter, Prince George’s County and municipal officials are assuring residents that schools and government buildings are prepared to handle such emergencies. “It was sort of theoretical before, but now it really brings it home to everyone the importance of the training,” Bowie spokeswoman Una Cooper said. The county and several municipalities, including Bowie, hold training where people are taught how to respond in the event of an active shooter threat. On Monday morning, the suspected gunman, Aaron Alexis, 34, of Texas, opened fire in the Washington Navy Yard, killing 12, including Sylvia Frasier, 53, who lived in PHOTOS BY DAN GROSS/THE GAZETTE See RESPONSE, Page A-6 Temitayo Ogunduyilemi (center), 15, a sophomore at Bowie High School, examines a vial of liquid during a DNA experiment in the MdBioLab on Sept. 11. Bioscience BY SOPHIE PETIT STAFF WRITER n ON THE bus Walmart move worries some in rural Bowie Bowie students get real-life CSI experience through traveling lab Bowie High School science students got out of the classroom and onto a bus, where instead of looking at pictures of DNA in textbooks with teachers, they ran DNA tests with scientists. The 45-foot-long, $400,000 MdBioLab bus — a mobile bioscience laboratory — visits high schools across Maryland, offering free hands-on bioscience classes taught by scientists using lab equipment in hopes of getting students interested in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, said Brian Gaines, chief executive officer of MdBioFoundation Inc., a Rockville-based nonprofit that provides and supports bioscience education. The lab will spend one week at Bowie High, starting Sept. 11, with different sci- ence and biology classes visiting every day. On Sept. 11, about 35 students, a biology teacher and a mobile lab instructor crowded onto the bus for a 55-minute class about identifying DNA — the genetics of living things. Students were asked to find out about the endangered great white shark species by running tests on synthetic shark DNA — various man-made liquids that test the same as real shark DNA — using DNAtesting kits. “A lot of schools don’t have these supplies or lab space,” Gaines said. “We also happen to be experts in this kind of teaching.” See BUS, Page A-6 n ‘Super center’ proposal could spark development on Mill Branch Road BY SOPHIE PETIT STAFF WRITER Isiaha Rogers, 15, a Bowie High sophomore, practices using a variable micropipete as part of a DNA experiment in the MdBioLab. The Walmart department store in Bowie is considering shutting down its current site and opening a larger store in the city — but some residents worry Prince George’s County’s first “super center” would hurt the rural character of the proposed relocation area. “I love Walmart ... but it seems we have too much building,” said Anna Drinnon, 62, a 26-year resident of Mill Branch Road, the road where the larger store would be located. “A couple of stores is fine, but we got too much.” The proposed 186,000-square-foot store would replace the 117,000-square-foot Walmart located on Crain Highway, and would be built on a nearby 74-acre plot of land, See WALMART, Page A-7 Westphalia developer continues push to lure FBI headquarters Upper Marlboro site would host about 15,000 jobs n BY CHASE COOK STAFF WRITER The Walton Group updated Prince George’s officials on its $2 billion Westphalia Town Center project in Upper Marlboro, specifically its plans to lure the FBI and its 11,000 jobs to the site. Walton Group CEO Bill Doherty spoke Sept. 11 at the Greater Prince George’s County Business Roundtable NEWS LASER TAG WILL STAY IN BOWIE Officials approved a request to waive a county parking space requirement. A-4 in Bowie on the importance of bringing in the FBI, which seeks to relocate from its current Washington, D.C. headquarters. The U.S. General Services Administration has been soliciting proposals from developers in Maryland, Virginia and Doherty the District for the construction of a replacement for the FBI’s current head- quarters. Doherty hopes a proposed 4.5-mile bus rapid transit route will bolster its chances at snagging the FBI headquarters. Passengers would depart from the Branch Avenue Metro station with a stop at Westphalia and Joint Base Andrews. The transportation solution, proposed by the Alberta, Canada-based developer, seeks to address a weakness the center could have regarding public transportation for FBI employees and other commuters, Doherty said. “At the end of the day something is needed,” Doherty said. “There will be SPORTS GOING FOR IT High Point boys soccer keeps pursuing an elusive state championship. A-10 15,000 jobs at Westphalia and about 11,000 jobs at Joint Base Andrews and there is no service.” Company representatives have been in contact with the Maryland Department of Transportation, but the route is still conceptual and more information isn’t available at this time, Doherty said. “The new headquarters should be located in Prince George’s County,” Doherty said. “It is based on both merit and equity.” Doherty’s plans puts Walton in direct competition with the Greenbelt Automotive Metro Station location that has been backed heavily by county officials. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has offered about 78 acres around the station as a potential location for the FBI. Westphalia would offer 50 acres, according to a Walton Group fact sheet. Doherty said Walton would stay in communication with the county, with the ultimate goal of the FBI building its headquarters in either location. “We should allow the client to See FBI, Page A-8 B-11 Calendar A-2 Classified B-10 Community News A-4 Entertainment B-1 Opinion A-9 Sports A10 Please RECYCLE Check out our Services Directory ADVERTISING INSIDE B SECTION 1906625

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