Hamm succeeds Godine on Columbia planning

BUSINESS DIGEST

December 11, 2007|By June Arney | June Arney,SUN REPORTER

Gregory F. Hamm, an executive with nearly 20 years of experience in planning and development, has replaced a veteran Rouse vice president at the helm of downtown development in Columbia, General Growth Properties Inc. announced yesterday.

Hamm, 45, replaced Douglas M. Godine, who has served as first vice president, development, with responsibility for Columbia since March 2006. Chicago-based General Growth bought Rouse in 2004.

"I do want to follow in the tradition of Jim Rouse and Columbia and make sure that we're on the cutting edge of intelligent and visionary planning," Hamm said yesterday.

Hamm, who becomes regional vice president and general manager of Columbia, has held leadership roles in Reston Town Center in Reston, Va., Dulles Station in Herndon, Va., and other large, mixed-use projects in the region. He worked as a consultant for General Growth on redevelopment of Landmark Mall in Alexandria, Va.

Godine, who said he is resigning to explore other business interests and opportunities, oversaw Rouse's leasing, marketing and land sales in Columbia from 1961 to 1978 before leaving to start his own development company, which built shopping centers, hotels and offices.

Hamm, who lives in Loudoun County, Va., has had an office in Columbia for more than a year, he said.

The change in leadership comes at a time when General Growth has been criticized for holding private meetings as part of the process of developing a master plan for downtown Columbia.

In yesterday's announcement, Hamm said all the proposals for downtown redevelopment will be open for public review and comment. Next month, the company will announce a series of public meetings to be held in the first months of the new year, it said.

june.arney@baltsun.com

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