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City of Laurel

  •   State: 
    Prince George's County
      County FIPS: 
    39°5′45″N 76°51′35″W
      Area total: 
    4.84 sq mi (12.53 km²)
      Area land: 
    4.82 sq mi (12.47 km²)
      Area water: 
    0.02 sq mi (0.06 km²)
    164 ft (50 m)
    1870; Incorporated 1870
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    Laurel, Prince George's County, Maryland, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    6,242.99 residents per square mile of area (2,410.60/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

Laurel was formed from land on the fall line of the Patuxent River patented by the Snowden family in 1658 as part of the 12,250-acre New Birmingham plantation. Nicholas Snowden built a grist mill on the site circa 1811 which grew to a small cotton mill by the 1820s. As a mill town, Laurel was somewhat unusual in Prince George's County and was surrounded by agricultural endeavors. In 1835, coinciding with the opening of the Capital Subdivisionrail line from Baltimore to Washington, Laurel became an early commuter town for Washington and Baltimore workers. The town was incorporated in 1870 and reincorporated in 1890 to coincide with a new electric power plant and paved streets. Laurel Park, a thoroughbred horse racetrack, is located just outside the city limits. Many dinosaur fossils from the Cretaceous Era are preserved in a 7.5-acre (3.0 ha) park in Laurel. The site, which among other finds has yielded fossilized teeth from Astrodon and Priconodon species, has been called the most prolific in the eastern United States. The Department of Defense is a prominent presence in the Laurel area today, with the Fort Meade Army base, the NSA and Johns Hopkins' Applied Physics Laboratory all located nearby. During the Civil War, Laurel, like much of Maryland, was a divided community, but with many Southern sympathizers. The city played a less important role in the latter half of the 19th century, while it still operated its factories.


Laurel is the primary city name, but also Maryland City, Md City, Russett are acceptable city names or spellings. The official name is City of Laurel. Laurel was formed from land on the fall line of the Patuxent River patented by the Snowden family in 1658. Many dinosaur fossils from the Cretaceous Era are preserved in a 7.5-acre (3.0 ha) park in Laurel. The site, which among other finds has yielded fossilized teeth from Astrodon and Priconodon species, has been called the most prolific in the eastern United States. The town was incorporated in 1870 and reincorporated in 1890 to coincide with a new electric power plant and paved streets and boarded sidewalks. In 1879 Laurel Academy along Route 1 was converted to a movie theatre in 1915, but it burned down in 1917. In the late 20th century, National Citizens Bank opened its doors on Main Street, as Prince George's County's first nationally chartered bank. In 1888, inventor David J. Weems tested an unmanned electric train on a two-mile circular track near Laurel Station. The three-ton vehicle reached speeds of up to 120 mph for twenty minutes. In its early years, Laurel Factory, like much of Maryland, was a divided community, but with many Southern sympathizers. It was a true company town, with a school and shops, and many of the mill workers' homes owned until the 1860s by the company. Laurel evolved into an early suburban town. Many of its residents commuted by rail to jobs in Washington or Baltimore. The community was originally known as "LaureL Factory", named for its laurel trees, when Edward Snowden became the first postmaster in 1837.


The zip codes for the incorporated city of Laurel are 20707, 20708, 20709, 20725 and 20756. Although served by the Laurel post office, Montpelier is not within the city limits. The city is situated on the bank of the Patuxent River, which was the power source for the cotton mills that were the early industry of the town. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.33 square miles (11.21 km²) The city lies within USDA plant hardiness zones 7 and 8. Laurel lies within the humid subtropical climate zone, featuring hot humid summers and cool to mild winters with high annual precipitation. It is located at 39°545N 76°5135W and has a population of 2,715. The town is located in the central part of the state, near the border with Anne Arundel and Howard counties. It has an average annual rainfall of 1.7 inches (4.2 m) and an average yearly temperature of 2.4 degrees (7.7 °F) The town has a history of being a cotton mill town, with the first cotton mills being built in the early 1800s. It also has a reputation for being a good place to get a good deal on real estate. It was the site of the World War II-era Battle of the Bulge, which took place in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Laurel is located on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay, which is a tributary of the Potomac.


As of the census of 2010, there were 25,115 people, 10,498 households, and 5,695 families residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 30.1% White, 48.9% African American, 0.4% Native American, 9.2% Asian and 0.21% Pacific Islander. There were 9,506 housing units at an average density of 2,514.7 per square mile (971.0/km²) The city's population was 47.7% male and 52.3% female. The median income for a household was $49,415, and the median income. for a family was $58,552. In the city, the population was spread out, with 22.0% under the age of 18, 8.6% from 18 to 24, 42. 9% from 25 to 44, 19.7%) and 7% who were 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 3.19. The city has four unincorporated areas: West Laurel (upper west), North Laurel (lower west), Maryland City (to the east) and South Laurel (northwest) The U.S. Census Bureau identifies four adjacent uninc incorporated areas as West Laurel, North Laurel, Maryland City andSouth Laurel. For statistical reporting, the Census Bureau Identifies four adjacentUnincorporated Areas (UCAs) for West, North and Maryland City.


The most prominent highway serving Laurel is Interstate 95, which skims the western edge of the city. Access from I-95 to Laurel is provided by Maryland Route 198, Maryland Route 197, and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway. Two MARC train stations on the Camden Line to Baltimore and Washington, D.C. are located in Laurel: Laurel Station and Laurel Racetrack Station. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) Metrobus service provides four routes (87, 89, 89M, and Z7) and local RTA bus service is available. Several taxicab and shuttle services also support the region. The major airports currently serving the Laurel area are Baltimore- Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport in adjacent Anne Arundel County, and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Arlington, Virginia near downtown Washington, C.D. For decades the airport provided general aviation access for medivac helicopters, flight training, business travelers, and served as a relief airport for light traffic into and out of the two major regional airports. Suburban Airport was located on Brock Bridge Road, just over the Anne Aunty County border. This airport closed in 2017 and is no longer used for general aviation. The Laurel area is home to the Laurel High School, which was founded in the early 20th century. It was the first high school in the state of Maryland to offer classes in English and math. It is also the only high school to offer calculus classes in Laurel.

Emergency services

The Laurel Police Department and the Prince George's County Police Department are the principal providers of the region's police officers. The Maryland State Police patrol US 1, MD 198, and Interstate 95, which pass through the area. The United States Park Police patrol the Baltimore-Washington Parkway and its connectors. The University of Maryland Laurel Medical Center, built in 1978 as the Greater Laurel-Beltsville Hospital, is located on Van Dusen Road. While it transitions to a full medical center to be built on the same campus, this facility currently provides emergency and outpatient services, wound care, hyperbaric medicine, primary care, and pain management, among other services. The primary emergency services providers for the City of Laurel and surrounding parts of Prince George’s County are the Laurel Volunteer Fire Department (Company 10) and the Laurel volunteer Rescue Squad (Company 49) Both companies are part of the PrinceGeorge's County Fire/EMS Department. The Laurel Volunteer Rescue Squad was formed in 1952. It operates one heavy rescue squad, one rescue-engine, three basic life support ambulances, and a swiftwater rescue team. The company operates three fire engines (Engine 101, Engine 103, and Engine 104); and an aerial tower (Tower 10). Ambulance service began December 11, 2006. A paramedic unit staffed by two career personnel is also assigned to Company 10. The department is located at 7411 Cherry Lane, and the fire department is staffed from 7:00am to 3:00pm Monday through Friday excluding holidays.


Laurel is governed by a five-member city council and a mayor. There are two political wards in the city. Two council members are elected from each ward, and a council member is elected at large by residents of both wards. City Council candidates must reside in Laurel a year before their election and during their full term of office. City council members serve for two years each term; the mayor serves for four years. The next election, to select a mayor and city council members, will be held in November 2023 with elected individuals to take office at the second regular City Council meeting that follows. The U.S. Postal Service operates the following post offices: Laurel, Laurel Carrier Annex, and Laurel Commons (at Towne Centre at Laurel). Montpelier Post Office is in nearby South Laurel CDP. The president of the city council presides over council meetings and can act in a limited capacity as mayor if the mayor is unavailable. The mayor of Laurel serves a four-year term. The city is located on Maryland Route 198, north of the Maryland Turnpike, and south of Maryland Route 199. The first ward is generally the area north of Md. Route 198 and the second ward is to the south. Phelps Senior Center on the corner of Montgomery Street and 8th Street/St. Mary's Place is the polling place for Ward 1, and the Robert J. DiPietro Community Center on Cypress Road is the Polling place for ward 2.

Media and culture

Television arrived in Laurel with the establishment of the first TV broadcast stations in Washington in 1946. For decades, Laurel has been served by the VHF TV channels 4 (WRC-TV / NBC), 5 (WTTG / FOX), 7 (WJLA- TV / ABC), and 9 (WUSA / CBS) from Washington. There are dozens of UHF TV stations from Washington, Baltimore and Annapolis. From these three cities, scores of AM and FM radio stations reach Laurel. The city government supports an annual LakeFest in May and Independence Day celebration each July. Since 1981, the Laurel Board of Trade has sponsored a Main Street Festival (held on Saturday of Mother's Day weekend) each May, and since 1995 a RiverFest each October. The Montpelier Mansion grounds have hosted an annual festival the first weekend in May since 1971, updated in 2007 to focus on an "herb, tea and arts" theme. Local performing arts outlets include the Venus Theatre, Laurel Mill Playhouse, Central Maryland Chorale (formerly Laurel Oratorio Society) and Montpeliers Arts Center. Many Laurel residents also read a free newspaper, the Washington Examiner. The Washington Post, The Washington Times and The Baltimore Sun are among Laurel's daily newspapers. The Laurel Leader is a local newspaper with an adult contemporary format. It is also the home of WACA 900, a mediumwave AM radio station with a contemporary music format. The town has one public library, which is open to the public.


Many Laurel residents are zoned to Laurel Elementary School or Scotchtown Hills Elementary School. Laurel High School in the city limits serves the city of Laurel. Nearby elementary schools serving areas outside of the Laurel city limits include Bond Mill, Deerfield Run, James H. Harrison, Montpelier, Oaklands, and Scotch Town Hills Elementary Schools. District of Columbia Public Schools operates an alternative middle and high school near Laurel named Maya Angelou Academy. Prince George's Community College and Howard Community College share a campus in Laurel called the Laurel College Center.Capitol Technology University is located south of Laurel, and the Anne Arundel County section of Laurel hosts the Woodland Job Corps Center. The Laurel Branch Library System operates the Laurel Branch library at the intersection of Seventh Street and Talbott Avenue. The "Maryland City at Russett" branch of the Anne. Arunderel County Public Library and the Savage branch of. the Howard County Public library System are also available to Laurel area residents. Laurel is home to the Laurel Baptist Academy, a private day care center, and St. Vincent Pallotti High School, a Catholic high school. The city is also home to a number of non-profit organizations, such as the Laurel Foundation, which provides grants and scholarships to students in need of financial support for their studies and activities. The town has a history of racial segregation, with black students attending two different high schools in the period 1928-1950. In 1964, legally-required racial segregation of schools ended, and black students from Laurel attended two different schools.

Sports and recreation

Laurel has eleven city parks, three athletic fields, and three community centers. The city also operates a municipal swimming pool and tennis courts. Four indoor facilities and seven outdoor facilities are available for private rental. The Gardens Ice House is also home to the Washington Jr. Nationals Tier III Junior A ice hockey team, playing in the Atlantic Junior Hockey League and the Tri-City Eagles that play for the Chesapeake Bay Hockey League. The Maryland Reapers, an indoor football franchise of the American Indoor Football League, are based in Laurel. The Laurel Roller Skating Center, just north of the city limits, provides a location for public roller skating. The Fairland Sports and Athletic Complex on the grounds of the Fairland Regional Park is operated by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission. These facilities offer a broad variety of activities including swimming, gymnastics, tennis, racquetball, weight training, child sitting, and massage therapy. Recent additional activities include basketball and lacrosse. The Laurel Little League, Greater Laurel United Soccer Club, Laurel Soccer Club (LSC), and the Laurel Boys and Girls Club are all based in the city. The City of Laurel is home to a number of minor league sports teams, including the Baltimore Ravens, the Baltimore Bullets, and the Washington Redskins. The Baltimore Ravens are a member of the National Football League (NFL) and the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Baltimore Bullets play in the Capital One Cup, the world's oldest professional women's basketball tournament.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland = 14.1. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 53. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 81. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in Laurel = 4.3 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 30,060 individuals with a median age of 37 age the population dropped by -0.13% in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 6,242.99 residents per square mile of area (2,410.60/km²). There are average 2.2 people per household in the 8,969 households with an average household income of $58,859 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is 7.40% of the available work force and has dropped -5.42% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 21.76%. The number of physicians in Laurel per 100,000 population = 141.8.


The annual rainfall in Laurel = 43.9 inches and the annual snowfall = 10.6 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 101. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 207. 88 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 25.2 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 43, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland which are owned by the occupant = 46.65%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 27 years with median home cost = $247,100 and home appreciation of -8.19%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $16.07 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $5,729 per student. There are 15.5 students for each teacher in the school, 904 students for each Librarian and 349 students for each Counselor. 5.43% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 22.68% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 13.67% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Laurel's population in Prince George's County, Maryland of 2,079 residents in 1900 has increased 14,46-fold to 30,060 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 51.68% female residents and 48.32% male residents live in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

    As of 2020 in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland are married and the remaining 52.55% are single population.

  • 35.9 minutes is the average time that residents in Laurel require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    73.70% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 13.23% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 7.20% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 1.98% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland, 46.65% are owner-occupied homes, another 45.55% are rented apartments, and the remaining 7.80% are vacant.

  • The 29.83% of the population in Laurel, Anne Arundel County, Maryland who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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