Proposed Ecodistrict information now available online, along with opportunity to give comments on framework concept, and take online visual preferences survey
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department encourages the community to learn about the principles of an “ecodistrict” that is being proposed for incorporation into the Bethesda Downtown Plan. The purpose of the ecodistrict is to integrate the goals of social, economic and environmental sustainability over the broader downtown area. In order to achieve these goals, the sector plan recommendations and implementation strategies will have to be carefully crafted.
Learn about the proposed Bethesda Downtown Plan ecodistrict and give comments online.
Residents have until June 6 to take the online visual preference survey for the Bethesda Downtown Plan. This informal survey poses questions about street character, gathering space, and the types of landscaping for each neighborhood in downtown Bethesda. The results will give direction to the Planning Department about how the Downtown could look and feel for the next twenty years and beyond.
The draft Framework Plan was presented at the May 17 Bethesda Downtown Plan Community Workshop. The concept shows several areas as “Expanded Centers of Activity” and two as “Emerging Centers of Activity.” These designations were informed by the community’s input at the March 1 Community Workshop. A “Symbolic Center” is shown at the Bethesda Metro Station which acknowledges the fact that while the area around the station is not a retail destination or center of a wide variety of activities, it is still a “Symbolic Center” and a transit destination. Blue circles show where lively, enhanced “Civic Gathering Spaces” can be in the future. The framework concept also shows other existing and proposed open spaces. Give your comments on this framework plan by emailing the Bethesda Downtown Plan Team: email@example.com
About The Montgomery County Planning Department: The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, aims to improve quality of life by conserving and enhancing the natural and built environment for current and future generations. The Planning Department creates great communities by developing master plans, reviewing applications for development and analyzing various types of information to help public officials plan for Montgomery County’s future. The Department is comprised of 140 staff members and provides recommendations, information, analysis and services to the Montgomery County Planning Board, the County Council, the County Executive, other government agencies and the general public. Visit www.montgomeryplanning.org
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SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department will be hosting a series of Monday evening meetings in June for the Greater Lyttonsville community to attend and learn more about the planning process for the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan. As a follow-up to the successful relaunch meeting held in early May, the planning team would like to invite residents to learn about specific subject areas such as: urban design, historic preservation, land use, parks, environment and transportation, including the Purple Line. The planning team will discuss these subject areas and how they will contribute to the overall plan, which will form the foundation for transforming the heart of Greater Lyttonsville.
All residents, property owners, and business owners are invited to attend the Monday Matters meetings on June 2, 9 and 16 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. at the Gwendolyn E. Coffield Center (2450 Lyttonsville Road, Silver Spring, MD), 2nd Floor Classroom.
What: Greater Lyttonsville Monday Matters Meeting Series
Who: Residents, property owners, and anyone interested in Greater Lyttonsville
When: Monday, June 2 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. Topics: Urban Design, Historic Preservation, Land Use
Monday, June 9 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. Topics: Parks, Environment
Monday, June 16 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. Topics: Transportation, Purple Line
Where: Gwendolyn E. Coffield Center – 2450 Lyttonsville Road, Silver Spring, MD
Info: Learn more about the Sector Plan: www.montgomeryplanning.org/community/lyttonsville
Social Media: #GreaterLP
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.
SILVER SPRING, MD—Are you ready for the summer? Montgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission has you covered with a host of special events, festivals and programs for July, August and September 2014. You can find everything from firework displays to outdoor festivals to ice skating shows in Montgomery Parks; and all affordable and family-friendly.
A sampling is listed below; all summer offerings can be found in the Montgomery County Summer 2014 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.
JULY 2014 SPECIAL EVENTS AND PROGAMS
Montgomery County Celebrates Independence Day
Friday, July 4, 7:00 p.m.
South Germantown Recreational Park
18041 Central Park Circle
Live music begins at 7:00 p.m. featuring “In Gratitude, A Tribute to Earth, Wind & Fire.” Fireworks begin at 9:15. Food vendors will be on site.
A second July 4 celebration is offered by Montgomery County at Einstein High School in Kensington.
Friday, July 4, 7:30 p.m.
Einstein High School
11135 Newport Mill Road
Kensington, MD 20895
Come celebrate Independence Day with live music and fireworks. Live music begins at 7:30 p.m. and fireworks begin at 9:15 p.m. Food vendors will be on site.
Little Bennett Outdoor Fest
Saturday, July 19, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Little Bennett Regional Park
23705 Frederick Road
Clarksburg, MD 20871
A full day of outdoor activities, games, hands-on learning and fun! Get new ideas on how to protect and enjoy the great outdoors from outdoor groups and retailers, conservation organizations and Montgomery Parks professionals. Activities include pitch-a-tent contest, live music, campfire building demo, hayride tours, s’mores, naturalist-led hikes and more.
Theatre on Ice
Saturday, July 26, 6:00 p.m.
Cabin John Ice Rink
10610 Westlake Drive
Rockville, MD 20852
Come see the Theater on Ice camp skating performances. Enjoy a themed show set to music and choreographed by professional instructors.
AUGUST 2014 SPECIAL EVENTS AND PROGRAMS
Theatre on Ice
Friday, August 8, 11:00 a.m.
Wheaton Ice Arena
11717 Orebaugh Ave
Wheaton, MD 20902
Come see the Theater on Ice camp skating performances. Enjoy a themed show set to music and choreographed by professional instructors.
Nature’s Summer Theatre
Friday, August 15, 6:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
$5, www.ParkPASS.org (Course #283300)
Locust Grove Nature Center
7777 Democracy Boulevard
Bethesda, MD 20817
Spend a summer evening watching birds and bats dance in the sky, hear a concert performed by insects and frogs, and explore a dazzling sunset light show. The evening ends with an outdoor film in our wild theater. Young performers can try out interpretive dance moves, shadow puppets, and frog songs, among other fun activities. All adults and children must register and pay fee. Ages 2 and up.
SEPTEMBER 2014 SPECIAL EVENTS AND PROGRAMS
Sunday, September 7, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Meadowside Nature Center
5100 Meadowside Lane
Rockville, MD 20855
Friday, September 19, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Meadowside Nature Center
5100 Meadowside Lane
Rockville, MD 20855
Monarch Fiesta Day
Saturday, September 20, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Black Hill Visitor Center
20926 Lake Ridge Drive
Boyds, MD 20841
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.
About 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
Final Sector Plan and Design Guidelines available online
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Approved and Adopted Glenmont Sector Plan is now available online. The County Council approved the Sector Plan in November 2013. The Plan area covered approximately 711 acres around the Glenmont Metro Station, with a diverse population of 12,582. The planning process was enhanced by the community outreach strategy, which was comprised of public meetings, stakeholder interviews and community visioning workshops. With a focus on encouraging mixed-use development at the Glenmont Shopping Center, the Glenmont Sector Plan takes a fresh look at the opportunities for revitalization and the challenges of transforming the core of Glenmont from an auto-oriented development into a transit-oriented, walkable, mixed-use community.
The Approved and Adopted Sector Plan can be accessed online along with the history of the planning process.
The Glenmont Sector Plan Design Guidelines are also now available to the public. Design Guidelines, approved by the Planning Board, help implement the recommendations of the Sector Plan. They illustrate how plan recommendations and zoning ordinance requirements can be met in the context of individual sites through best practices for building and site design.
Building upon the work that came out of the Glenmont Sector Plan, the County Department of General Services was successful in their bid to obtain assistance from the Urban Land Institute (ULI)-Council of Government (COG) Technical Assistance Panel (TAP) Program. The twelve-week program will evaluate the challenges of redeveloping the Glenmont Shopping Center and suggest strategies to implement the vision of the Sector Plan.
Planners to present a preliminary framework concept for the Bethesda Downtown Plan and get ideas on character of Downtown neighborhoods
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department will be hosting a second workshop for the Bethesda Downtown Plan on Saturday, May 17, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School (4301 East-West Hwy., Bethesda, MD). Planners will present a framework concept for the plan based on feedback from numerous community meetings held since last fall, followed by a break-out session where participants will work in groups to examine the characteristics of the various neighborhoods that make up the Downtown Bethesda. RSVP’s are encouraged but not required.
Attendees will also have the opportunity to weigh in on an online visual survey leading up to and during the event. For each neighborhood in downtown Bethesda, the informal survey will pose questions about street character, gathering space, and the types of landscaping for those spaces. The survey is available now and will give direction to the Planning Department about how the Downtown could look and feel for the next twenty years and beyond.
What: Bethesda Downtown Presentation and Workshop
Who: Residents, property owners, and anyone with an interest in the future of Downtown Bethesda
When: Saturday, May 17 (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.)
Where: Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School (4301 East-West Hwy., Bethesda, MD)
Learn more about the Bethesda Downtown Plan and how to get involved: www.bethesdadowntownplan.org
SILVER SPRING, MD—Montgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, and the Kensington Historical Society will celebrate a milestone on the road to rehabilitation of the historic Brainard Warner Manor on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 2 p.m. The 1891 house, located in Warner Circle Special Park in Kensington, recently had two non-historic wings removed as part of a major rehabilitation effort to return the house to its historic beauty and restore the grounds. These efforts have been funded with support from Montgomery Parks Legacy Open Space Program, Restoration of Historic Structures Fund, and state bond bills. Additional fundraising efforts are in progress to support rehabilitation of the interior.
BRAINARD WARNER MANOR CELEBRATION
WHO: Members of the community, elected officials and local businesses and organizations are invited to a community celebration.
WHAT: A community celebration at the historic Brainard Warner Manor will feature a speaking program followed by refreshments and family activities.
Brainard Warner Manor Celebration Schedule:
2:00 Guests arrival and refreshments
2:15 Speaking program
- Mary Bradford, Director of Montgomery Parks
- Peter Fosselman, Mayor of Kensington
- Isiah Leggett, Montgomery County Executive
- Roger Berliner, Montgomery County Councilmember
- Richard Madaleno, Maryland State Senator, District 18
- Julie O’Malley, President, Kensington Historical Society
2:45 Family-friendly activities including historic games and crafts
4:00 Celebration concludes
WHEN: Saturday, May 17, 2014,* 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
*Rain date: Sunday, May 18, 2014, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
WHERE: Brainard Warner Manor
Warner Circle Special Park
10231 Carroll Place
Kensington, MD 20895
WHY: Celebrate an important milestone in the rehabilitation of this historic house that is undergoing a long-term rehabilitation including architectural and engineering work to transform the vacant building.
Montgomery Parks, with the ongoing support of the Town of Kensington and community leaders, has been working to rehabilitate the 1891 Historic Brainard Warner Manor for many years. The former home of Kensington founder, Brainard Warner, the site was acquired by the Parks Department in 2005 through the Legacy Open Space Program, to preserve the structures and the historic landscape that has served as a de facto town green for decades. The site is listed in the Montgomery County Master Plan for Historic Preservation, and is also included in the National Register of Historic Places.
The Brainard Warner Manor is one of 117 historic structures located in Montgomery Parks. For more information about historic structures and sites in Montgomery Parks please visit www.historyintheparks.org.
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Three-day conference will explore latest planning trends from across the region
SILVER SPRING, MD – The community is invited to register for Makeover Montgomery 2 | Moving Forward Montgomery. The three-day conference is happening May 8-10 and will look at the latest trends, issues and solutions that can help move our community forward. This event is following on the success of the Makeover Montgomery conference in 2011 which focused on the Zoning Rewrite project. Now, the National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education, the Montgomery County Planning Department and the Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland have joined forces again to host Makeover Montgomery 2 | Moving Forward Montgomery (MM2).
The conference will kick off on Thursday, May 8 at 7 p.m. at the University of Maryland, College Park with a keynote address delivered by Ellen Dunham-Jones, award-winning architect and professor of contemporary architecture and urban design at the Georgia Tech School of Architecture. Ms. Dunham-Jones is also a board member of the Congress for New Urbanism and coauthor of “Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs.”
The conference will then continue on Friday, May 9 and Saturday, May 10 at the Silver Spring Civic Building located in downtown Silver Spring (One Veterans Pl., Silver Spring, MD). Conference organizers are pleased to present an exciting lineup of regional and national experts to lead discussions on a variety of topics within the following tracks:
- Transportation and Transit Oriented Development (TOD)
- Creative Use of Public Assets/Public-Private Partnerships
- Current Planning Trends
All across the country, suburban planners and residents are grappling with how to adapt to demographic shifts, changing housing preferences, and growing infrastructure costs – all while making their communities more sustainable. This event will address these themes and more with some of the brightest planning minds from across the country.
MM2 Conference Details:
MM2 | Moving Forward Montgomery
May 8, 2014, 7 p.m. at the University of Maryland School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation Auditorium on the campus of The University of Maryland, College Park
May 9-10, 2014, starting at 8 a.m. at the Silver Spring Civic Building (1 Veterans Pl., Silver Spring)
Registration fee: $35
AICP CM and AIA CE credits are pending
About The Montgomery County Planning Department:
The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, aims to improve quality of life by conserving and enhancing the natural and built environment for current and future generations. The Planning Department creates great communities by developing master plans, reviewing applications for development and analyzing various types of information to help public officials plan for Montgomery County’s future. The Department is comprised of 140 staff members and provides recommendations, information, analysis and services to the Montgomery County Planning Board, the County Council, the County Executive, other government agencies and the general public. Visit www.montgomeryplanning.org.
About The National Center for Smart Growth:
The National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education (NCSG) is a nonpartisan center for research on smart growth and related land use issues in Maryland, in metropolitan regions around the nation, and in Asia and Europe. Located at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland, just eight miles from Washington, D.C., the NCSG was founded in 2000 as a cooperative venture of four University of Maryland schools: Architecture, Planning and Preservation; Public Policy; Agriculture and Natural Resources; and Engineering. The mission of the NCSG is to bring the diverse resources of the University of Maryland and a network of national experts to bear on issues related to land use and the environment, transportation and public health, housing and community development, and international urban development. The NCSG accomplishes this through independent, objective, interdisciplinary research, outreach and education.
About The Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland:
The Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland brings together an active community of scholars and students to creatively confront the issues facing our cities and metropolitan regions. Through instruction, participation in research, and community interaction, students explore the changing character and critical problems of modern urban development. The core curriculum of the Urban Studies and Planning Program emphasizes understanding of the political, economic, institutional and social context in which professional planners work with a variety of stakeholders to develop and implement plans and programs. The aim of the Master of Community Planning degree is to prepare planning professionals and future scholars. The Program is located within the University of Maryland School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation.
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SILVER SPRING, MD – Recommendations for the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan will be presented at a community meeting on Wednesday, May 14 at 7 p.m. at the Sandy Spring Friends School Library (Yarnall Hall, 16923 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring). The recommendations are the result of the work of the Montgomery County Planning Department based on extensive engagement and feedback from the community.
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 meeting held on March 19. 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. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and give comments on the recommendations.
What: Sandy Spring Rural Village Community Meeting – Plan Recommendations Revealed
When: Wednesday, May 14, from 7 to 8:30 p.m.
Where: Sandy Spring Friends School, Yarnall Hall Library, 16923 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring
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
The Plan will also examine land use, transportation, and potential zoning changes.After receiving comments from the community at this meeting, Planning staff will prepare the Staff Draft Plan that will be reviewed by the Planning Board in early summer 2014.
Learn more about the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan and how to get involved: http://www.montgomeryplanning.org/sandyspring
Attend the third community meeting for the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment and provide feedback on staff’s draft recommendations for the area
The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the Aspen Hill Library (4407 Aspen Hill Road).
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 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 existing development potential and reevaluates the area’s 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.
Public invited to a series of open houses to learn more about the proposed zoning changes, new interactive maps
The Montgomery County Planning Department is inviting residents and business owners to give feedback on the comprehensive District Map Amendment proposed for Montgomery County. There will be several open houses held throughout the County this spring and all are invited to attend. The new Zoning Code was approved by the Montgomery County Council in March 2014 after months of worksessions and discussions. The new zoning code will modernize antiquated, redundant zoning regulations, and create new tools to help achieve goals in community plans.
Although the new code has already been approved, it cannot go into effect until a new zoning map has also been adopted, since the zoning on many non-residential properties is changing. Over the next few months, Planning Department staff will be focusing their attention on the proposed zoning map and are seeking feedback from affected property owners as well as from residents. Staff will be available and will have interactive maps at each of the open house events to help answer questions about the proposed zoning.
After the spring open houses, staff will bring a revised version of the proposed zoning map to the Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) committee for review. Once the PHED committee completes its review, the full County Council will evaluate the proposed zoning map. It is anticipated that the map will be adopted by Council in the summer or early fall, and that the new code will become effective on October 30, 2014.
Zoning Code Open Houses Details:
April 22 (6-8 p.m.) Rockville Memorial Library
April 24 (6-8 p.m.) Wheaton Regional Library
April 29 (5-8 p.m.) Park and Planning Headquarters, Silver Spring
May 1 (6-8 p.m.) Marilyn J. Praisner Library, Burtonsville
May 5 (6-8 p.m.) UpCounty Regional Services Center, Germantown
May 6 (6-8 p.m.) B-CC Regional Services Center, Bethesda
About the Zoning Code Rewrite:
Montgomery County’s Zoning Code was originally written in 1977. It is the law that governs growth in the county. The comprehensive rewrite of the ordinance started five years ago with the goal of simplifying the complex and outdated code. The Council’s recent approval of the text for the Zoning Code Rewrite will be instrumental in all future planning and development in the County. Planning Department staff is looking forward to embracing a new zoning code: one that is easier to use, encourages better development, enhances compatibility, promotes sustainability, and supports our county master plans. The new zoning code represents a great step forward for Montgomery County to have a more understandable, clear and coherent zoning ordinance that will be easier to use and to enforce. It offers a better organization of uses and zones, clearer procedures for approval and a solid foundation in modern planning and design principles.
Learn more about the Zoning Rewrite and how to get involved in the process.