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Aug 15 14

Casey Anderson Sworn In As New Montgomery County Planning Board Chair

by Bridget Schwiesow

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Casey Anderson was officially sworn in on Wednesday, Aug. 13 to become the newest Montgomery County Planning Board Chair. Mr. Anderson will lead the five-member Montgomery County Planning Board which oversees the Montgomery County Planning Department and the Montgomery Department of Parks. The Planning Board advises the Montgomery County Council on land use planning and community planning in Montgomery County.

Learn more about Casey Anderson.

View the short video of Casey Anderson’s Swearing In Ceremony.

Questions or comments? Contact the Planning Board.

Aug 14 14

Montgomery Parks Announces September Events, Festivals and Special Programs!

by Melissa Chotiner

SILVER SPRING, MDMontgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission announces a variety of special events, festivals and programs taking place this September in parks all across the county.  A sampling is listed below; all fall offerings can be found in the Montgomery County Guide to Recreation and Parks Programs at www.MontgomeryParks.org/guide and in print at select Parks and Recreation facilities, government buildings and libraries, while supplies last.

SEPTEMBER 2014 SPECIAL EVENTS AND PROGAMS

pawpawfruitpicture_000Pawpaw Festival
Sunday, September 7, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$5
Meadowside Nature Center
5100 Meadowside Lane
Rockville, MD 20855

It’s time to get your paws on some pawpaws! Meadowside will be celebrating this delightful native fruit with music, storytelling, crafts, games, raptor talks, expert advice on pawpaw cultivation, and most importantly…a pawpaw tasting station. This year’s festival will feature pawpaw fruit for purchase! No registration required. All participants must pay.

 

Night Fishing at Little Seneca Lake
Wednesday, September 10, Sundown to Midnight
Free
Black Hill Regional Park, Little Seneca Lake
20926 Lake Ridge Drive
Boyds, MD 20841
www.BlackHillBoats.com

Join us at Little Seneca Lake for a special monthly night fishing experience when the moon is full (or pretty close) and the fish are (hopefully) biting.

*Anglers may fish late into the evening from the shore or in boats. Please bring your own boat (–rental boats will not be available after normal Boathouse hours. All boats and anglers must be off the lake and out of the park by midnight, and must have operating navigational lights. All state fishing regulations and Montgomery Parks/M-NCPPC rules and regulations will be enforced.

Back in Grandma’s Day
Saturday, September 13, 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Free
Oakley Cabin African American Museum & Park
3610 Brookville Road
Olney, MD 20833
www.HistoryInTheParks.org

Bring the family and enjoy guided tours of the historic 19th century cabin and make crafts to take home. Celebrate Grandparents’ Day by receiving a free Park Pass if you bring your grandparent to the event.

 

Bluegrass on the Farm
Saturday, September 13, Noon – 6:00 p.m.
$12 for advance admission, $15 at the gate (kids under the age of 12 free with an adult)
Agricultural History Farm Park
18400 Muncaster Road
Derwood, MD 20855
www.BluegrassontheFarm.com

Join the Friends of the Agricultural History Farm Park for great bluegrass in the great outdoors. This year’s lineup includes Grammy nominee and International Bluegrass Music Association award winners the Boxcars featuring Adam Steffey, as well as popular local bands Clearspring and Windy Ridge. Bring your lawn chair and blankets, and instruments if you want to jam with other musicians. Food available for purchase.

 

Apple Festival & Campfire
Friday, September 19, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
$8
Meadowside Nature Center
5100 Meadowside Lane
Rockville, MD 20855

It’s apple harvest time! Come enjoy apple cider pressing, apple lore, and hands-on activities; end the evening at the campfire ring for s’mores and more. Children and adults must register and pay. Register at www.ParkPASS.org (Course #294253)

 

Monarch Fiesta Day
Saturday, September 20, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Free
Black Hill Visitor Center
20926 Lake Ridge Drive
Boyds, MD 20841
www.BlackHillNature.org

Celebrate the monarch butterfly and its amazing annual migration to Mexico. Activities include monarch tagging and release, tours of the monarch waystation, migration activity, monarch photo opportunity, insect hunt, monarch movie, story time, crafts and more.

 

Fall Exhibition Competition Send-Off
Saturday, September 20, 6:15 – 8:15 p.m.
Free
Cabin John Ice Rink
10610 Westlake Drive
Rockville, MD 20852
www.CabinJohnIce.com

Come see Cabin John’s best and brightest skaters perform before they head out to various U.S. Figure Skating Qualifying and Non-Qualifying events this fall and winter. Program will feature solo performances as well as paris and synchronized skating routines.

 

kingsley school 1929Kingsley Schoolhouse: “Lessons from the Past”
Sunday, September 21, 2014 | 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
FREE
Kingsley Schoolhouse
Little Bennett Regional Park
24472 Clarksburg Road
Clarksburg, MD 20871
www.HistoryInTheParks.org

Join trained volunteer docents for free interpretive tours of this 19th century one-room schoolhouse, located in Montgomery Parks’ largest park. Learn about what it was like to attend school in Montgomery County back in the 1920s.

 

The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission Montgomery Parks
Montgomery Parks manages more than 35,000 acres of parkland, consisting of 420 parks. Montgomery Parks is a department of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), a bi-county agency established in 1927 to steward public land. The M-NCPPC has been nationally recognized for its high quality parks and recreation services and is regarded as a national model by other parks systems. www.montgomeryparks.org

 

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Aug 5 14

Sandy Spring Rural Village Public Hearing Scheduled – Sept. 4

by Bridget Schwiesow

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Public invited to testify on Public Hearing Draft plan at Planning Board meeting

SILVER SPRING, MD The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a public hearing on the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan on Thursday, Sept. 4, at their regularly scheduled Board Meeting which will be held at 8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD 20910.

The public is invited to give their views on land use, transportation, and zoning changes in the Public Hearing Draft which details the concept of a new village center from the 1998 Sandy Spring/Ashton Master Plan.

View the Public Hearing Draft for the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan.

The recommendations seek to bring about the vision and address any concerns that were voiced by the community at the four-day community design workshop held in February and the community meetings held in March and May. After gathering the input from the community, planners have come up with recommendations for zoning, land use, and connectivity that will help maintain the rural feel of the area while developing a more pedestrian-friendly, sustainable community.

Those wishing to testify in person at the public hearing are requested to call the Planning Department’s Public Information Line at 301-495-4605 or sign up to speak at the hearing using on-line registration.

If you are unable to attend the meeting, written testimony may be submitted to:

Planning Board Chair, Montgomery County Planning Board, 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910. Testimony may also be submitted by e-mail to mcp-chair@montgomeryplanning.org.

Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan Highlights:
The 1998 Sandy Spring/Ashton Master Plan recognized that the details of a new village center concept were beyond its scope and recommended more detailed study and analysis to develop the concept. This new Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan will follow the guidance in the 1998 Master Plan and determine how to best connect the new fire station into a village center concept using the following three goals:

-Preserve the rich cultural history of the area
-Design a civic space and village center
-Connect the community to the village center and examine right-of-way issues

Learn more about the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan and how to get involved: http://www.montgomeryplanning.org/sandyspring

Aug 4 14

Get Involved with the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan This Week

by Bridget Schwiesow

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Meet Planning Department staff at two community events – National Night Out and Sunrise Series meeting 

SILVER SPRING, MDThe Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is inviting anyone who lives, works or has an interest in the Greater Lyttonsville community to meet with Planning Department staff at two community events this week to learn more about the planning process for the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan.

Planners will host a booth at the Greater Lyttonsville community’s participation in the annual National Night Out event Tuesday, August 5 scheduled from 6:15 to 8 p.m. at the Gwendowlyn E. Coffield Center (2450 Lyttonsville Road, Silver Spring, MD). The participation in the annual neighborhood event is meant to encourage youth and families to get involved with the sector plan process. There will be interactive planning activities and staff on hand to answer questions about the planning process.

Business owners and employees are invited to attend the final “Sunrise Series” meeting Thursday, August 7 from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. in the Parking Lot in rear of 2402-2465 Linden Lane, Silver Spring, MD (Technical Service Park). The early morning meeting will offer free breakfast to attendees, an opportunity to meet with planners and provide feedback through a questionnaire to gather more information from area employees and business owners as it relates to the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan.

The Sunrise Series meetings will be hosted in partnership with the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development and the Silver Spring Regional Center.

Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Weekly Events Details:
National Night Out – Lyttonsville Community
Tuesday, August 5
National Night Out is scheduled for 6:15 – 8 p.m.
Coffield Center 2450 Lyttonsville Road, Silver Spring, MD

Sunrise Series Meeting for Area Businesses  
Thursday, August 7, 6:30 to 8:30 a.m.
Parking Lot in rear of 2402-2465 Linden Lane, Silver Spring, MD (Technical Service Park)

Info: Learn more about the Sector Plan and fill out the questionnaire: www.montgomeryplanning.org/greaterlp

Jul 31 14

Learn About Existing and Proposed Bikeways in Montgomery County

by Bridget Schwiesow

 

ccl crossing
Planning Department’s webpage provides map and resource of information

SILVER SPRING, MDThe Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, has created a new webpage dedicated to bikeways in Montgomery County. The page allows visitors to view all of the existing and proposed bikeways in the County complete with an interactive map.

The bikeways page also features the Silver Spring Bicycle Parking Station Study, which evaluates future demand and potential locations for a bicycle parking station near the Silver Spring Transit Center and the planned connection of the Capital Crescent Trail and Metropolitan Branch Trail. Online visitors can also review “An Assessment of Purple Line Corridor Bicycle and Pedestrian Issues” for the proposed Capital Crescent Trail between Bethesda and Silver Spring and pedestrian issues around the Purple Line.

The page was designed to provide greater accessibility for online views of the Bikeways Master Plan and to highlight the current bicycle planning efforts of the Montgomery County Planning Department.

“Planning for and maintaining quality bicycle infrastructure in our county is vital to the future of creating walkable and pedestrian friendly communities,” said David Anspacher, Transportation Planner Coordinator.

For questions or comments about the bikeways page, contact:
David Anspacher, Functional Planning and Policy
david.anspacher@montgomeryplanning.org
301-495-2191

Jul 29 14

ePlans Record Plat Applicant Training Offered by Planning Department

by Bridget Schwiesow

eplans_logo_print

Applicants invited to sign up for training on Planning Department and Department of Permitting Service’s ePlans electronic review process

SILVER SPRING, MD The Montgomery County Planning Department part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a series of ePlans training sessions for individuals who will be submitting Record Plat applications for M-NCPPC and the Department of Permitting Services (DPS) through the ePlans electronic review process. The five sessions will be held at the Planning Department Headquarters on the first floor, Room 118, at 8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD 20910.

On July 1, 2014, the Planning Department went live with an electronic review process for Record Plat applications using the ePlans system.  All record plats must now be submitted through ePlans, rather than on paper, and will be reviewed electronically.  To educate applicants about the new process and the use of ePlans, the Planning Department has scheduled several training sessions. Individuals are invited to register for the time of their choice by calling 301-495-4550 or emailing sheila.sampson@montgomeryplanning.org.

The training is designed for individuals from the surveying or engineering firms who typically submit record plat applications and will cover the following areas:

-Use of the Application Portal
-IT requirements and steps for downloading the ePlans software
-File types and naming for the required submittal items
-Overview of the steps in the review process and the use of ePlans tools

Learn more about the Planning Department’s ePlans system.

Details:
What: ePlans – Record Plat Applicant Training
Where: Planning Department Headquarters (8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD) Room 118
When: Pick only one:
Wednesday, July 30, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Monday, August 4, from 1 – 3 p.m.
Friday, August 8, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Monday, August 11, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Thursday, August 14, from 1 – 3 p.m. 

Register: by calling 301-495-4550 or emailing sheila.sampson@montgomeryplanning.org

Questions: Contact Cathy Conlon:  catherine.conlon@montgomeryplanning.org

Jul 28 14

Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment Public Hearing Scheduled – Sept. 11

by Bridget Schwiesow

Aspen Hill cover 2014
Public invited to testify on Public Hearing Draft plan at Planning Board meeting

SILVER SPRING, MD The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a public hearing on the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment on Thursday, September 11, at 6:00 p.m., at their regularly scheduled Board Meeting which will be held at 8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD 20910.

The public is invited to give their views on the Public Hearing Draft which is an amendment to the 1994 Aspen Hill Master Plan and the General Plan (On Wedges and Corridors).

Learn more about the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment.

Those wishing to testify in person at the public hearing are requested to call the Planning Department’s Public Information Line at 301-495-4605 or sign up to speak at the hearing using on-line registration.

The Plan Amendment makes recommendations for land use and zoning within the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment area as well as recommendations intended to improve overall circulation, pedestrian connections and the network of bikeways, for approximately 14 acres west of the Aspen Hill Road and Connecticut Avenue intersection.

If you are unable to attend the meeting, written testimony may be submitted to:

Planning Board Chair, Montgomery County Planning Board, 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910. Testimony may also be submitted by e-mail to mcp-chair@mncppc-mc.org.

Learn more about the planning process for the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment, including the recap from the three community meetings.

Plan Background:
In the spring of 2013, the County Council programmed the preparation of a minor master plan amendment for approximately 14 acres of land located west of the intersection of Connecticut Avenue and Aspen Hill Road, the majority of which was recommended for the office zoning in the 1994 Aspen Hill Master Plan. The minor amendment process provides an opportunity to reassess the subject area and analyze alternative redevelopment and zoning opportunities. The review considers the area’s existing development potential and reevaluates that potential within the context of a changing office market in the County as a whole, the intent and rationale of the 1994 Plan, and any impacts to the surrounding land uses and transportation network.

Jul 25 14

Business Owners Invited to Attend the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Sunrise Series

by Bridget Schwiesow

Sunrise Series Postcard - front_JPG

Early morning meetings intended to engage business community on the sector plan

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department will be hosting two meetings as part of their “Sunrise Series” for business owners in the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan area on Thursday, July 31 and Thursday, August 7 from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. to provide an opportunity for the business community to ask questions and give feedback on the sector planning process.

The early morning meetings will offer free breakfast, an opportunity to meet with planners and provide a questionnaire to attendees to gather more information about business owners as it relates to the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan.

The Sunrise Series meetings will be hosted in partnership with the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development and the Silver Spring Regional Center.

As a follow-up to the successful community workshop held on July 15 and the June Monday Matters series which focused on specific subject areas in the plan, the planning team would like to invite business owners to give their feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of the plan area and their ideas for the future of Greater Lyttonsville.

Details:
What: Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Sunrise Series
Who: Business owners in the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan area
When/Where:
Thursday, July 31 – 6:30 to 8:30 a.m.  
Parking lot in front of 2666 Pittman Drive, Silver Spring, MD (John Deere Landscaping Company)

Thursday, August 7 – 6:30 to 8:30 a.m.  
Parking Lot in rear of 2402-2465 Linden Lane, Silver Spring, MD (Technical Service Park)

Info: Learn more about the Sector Plan and fill out the questionnaire: www.montgomeryplanning.org/greaterlp

Social Media: #GreaterLP

Plan Background:
The Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan was initially started in summer 2012 but was placed on hold at the direction of the County Council. Now, planners are looking to re-engage the community from the area west of Silver Spring and east of Rock Creek Park to determine the vision for the area that will guide development for the next twenty years and beyond.

The planning process will include a review of zoning and land use, with a particular focus on the commercial area along Brookville Road and the two proposed Purple Line stations. The Plan will look at potential locations for mixed-use development near stations, examine important employment centers, seek to preserve and enhance the existing single-family neighborhood character, coordinate with the Fort Detrick Forest Glen Annex planning process, address quality of life issues, and strive to maintain affordable housing and support cultural diversity. It will also address connections between the existing residential neighborhoods and employment areas along Brookville Road.

For the recap of the May 6 Relaunch community meeting, view the presentation and the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Briefing Book which summarizes the existing conditions of the Plan Area.

Jul 22 14

Montgomery Parks Reports Elevated Microcystin Levels at Lake Needwood; Visitors Asked to Use Caution

by Melissa Chotiner

Pet owners urged to keep dogs out of the lake; boating and fishing remain open.

SILVER SPRING, MDMontgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission is asking residents to use caution when recreating on or near Lake Needwood located within Rock Creek Regional Park. Testing has shown there are elevated levels of microcystin, a toxic substance produced by some species of blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), in the 75-acre lake. Microcystin, hepatoxin, can cause harm to the liver of humans and pets. Of particular concern are dogs that are off-leash and may swim and/or drink from the lake, despite park regulations. Montgomery Parks urges visitors to take the following precautions:

 

  • Keep dogs on leash (as is regularly required at the park), and do not allow them to drink or go in the water
  • Swimming is prohibited in the lake at all times
  • Wash hands thoroughly if they come in contact with the water
  • Only eat properly cooked muscle meat of fish that are caught in the lake

Boating and fishing will remain open at the lake.

 

“We have posted signs around Lake Needwood and urge visitors to please pay attention to these precautions to avoid any harm from microcystin,” said Jai Cole, Natural Resources Manager for Montgomery Parks. “Portions of the lake may be contaminated for the rest of the season. We will continue to monitor and update signs when the warning is lifted.”

For updates or more information, visit www.MontgomeryParks.org.

 

About The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission Montgomery Parks:

Montgomery Parks manages more than 36,000 acres of parkland, consisting of 420 parks. Montgomery Parks is a department of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), a bi-county agency established in 1927 to steward public land. The M-NCPPC has been nationally recognized for its high-quality parks and recreation services, and is regarded as a national model by other parks systems. www.MontgomeryParks.org

 

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Jul 21 14

Approved and Adopted Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan Available

by Bridget Schwiesow

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Amendment to the Master Plan of Highways available online 

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department has made the approved and adopted Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan available on its website. The plan recommends a bus rapid transit (BRT) network throughout Montgomery County that will improve accessibility and mobility on county roads. The plan was adopted on December 18, 2013 by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, as modified by the County Council on November 25, 2013.

View the Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan along with the timeline of the planning process.

This Plan provides enhanced opportunities for travel by transit to support Montgomery County’s economic development and mobility goals in an environmentally sustainable way, and in a way that preserves our existing communities. As a Functional Master Plan, it makes no changes to current planned land use or zoning, but recommends changes and additions to the transportation network that are needed to serve the County’s most densely developed areas, areas planned for redevelopment, and areas planned for new dense development.

The Countywide Transit Corridor Functional Master Plan’s recommendations include:

  • Transit facilities along eleven corridors to facilitate Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) service that will move more people to and from jobs, homes, shopping, and entertainment areas in urbanizing parts of the County, while making more efficient use of our public rights-of-way and existing pavement.
  • Pedestrian facilities that meet ADA Best Practices and provide safe and adequate accommodation along and across the recommended transit corridors, ensuring that transit patrons can safely cross to and from transit stops and that the general public can safely cross these roadways at all intersections.
  • Accommodating all master plan bikeways within the recommended rights-of-way and accommodating additional on-road bike facilities where possible.
  • Designating more than two dozen Bicycle-Pedestrian Priority Areas around major transit stations.
  • Adding 25 feet of right-of-way for a third track on the MARC Brunswick Line between the Frederick County line and the Metropolitan Grove station to reduce conflicts with freight service and enable the expansion of commuter service.

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