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Sep 11 14

Ride the Montgomery Modern Bike Tour – Oct. 11, 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

by Bridget Schwiesow

montgomery_modern

Community invited by Montgomery Planning to pedal around mid-century neighborhoods and landmarks

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is hosting a bike tour of mid-century modern architecture. The route will follow the Rock Creek Park trail through entire subdivisions of contemporary homes designed in the 1950s.

The tour is sponsored by the Planning Department’s Historic Preservation Office and the Potomac Valley chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Register for the Montgomery Modern Bike Tour.

The morning tour visits houses in neighborhoods of Hammond Hill and Hammond Wood, and leads through Rock Creek Woods, all designed by architect Charles Goodman, FAIA. Goodman, who designed the Hollin Hills subdivision in Alexandria, was Washington’s foremost modernist architect working in single-family housing in the 1950s.

Bikers will have a box lunch at the North Chevy Chase Christian Church, followed by a tour of this modernist gem by Bethesda architect John Samperton, AIA, known for his design of Gallaudet College and Catholic University buildings.  Also on the tour is Samperton’s pristine North Chevy Chase Pool Bathhouse.

Details:
Montgomery Modern Bike Tour
sponsored by the Montgomery County Planning Department’s Historic Preservation Office and the Potomac Valley chapter of AIA
October 11, 10:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Tour mid-century neighborhoods in Montgomery County on two wheels: $30 for the public ($20 for AIA and Docomomo members) and includes lunch and interior visits.

Learn more about the Montgomery Modern Bike Tour

The purpose of the tour is to heighten awareness of mid-century modern design in Montgomery County and the preservation challenges now facing owners of buildings dating from the post-World War II decades. The works of two leading architects and their approaches to 1950s modernism will be discussed as well as ways of renovating and expanding mid-century designs now considered historic.

The event is part of the Historic Preservation Office’s Montgomery Modern initiative to educate the public about the architectural heritage of Montgomery County. This preservation program includes the agency’s research and writing of a new book, Montgomery Modern, on the wealth of mid-century modern architecture in the county. The book is scheduled for publication in fall 2015. Learn more about the Historic Preservation Office’s Montgomery Modern initiative.

The bike tour is part of the Docomomo Tour Day event sponsored by Docomomo-DC. This non-profit is dedicated to the documentation and conservation of buildings, sites and neighborhoods of the modern movement (Docomomo) and is part of an international organization founded in 1988 by two Dutch architects.

Interested tour participants are required to bring their own bicycles and wear helmets. The tour will start at the Newport Middle School, 11311 Newport Mill Road, Kensington, Maryland 20895.

Bikers must be willing to pedal at a slow to moderate pace, and travel up and down hilly streets with some traffic possible during the 13.5-mile tour, which includes the 6 mile ride from the end of the tour back to the starting point.

Sep 10 14

Westbard Sector Plan Kickoff and Opportunities and Constraints Meeting – Tuesday, Sept. 23 at 7:00 p.m.

by Bridget Schwiesow

features-divisions-westbard

Community invited to RSVP and view agenda for meeting

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a community meeting on the Westbard Sector Plan on Tuesday, Sept. 23, from 7-9 p.m. at Walt Whitman High School cafeteria (7100 Whittier Blvd., Bethesda, MD). Anyone who lives, works or has an interest in the future of the Westbard community is invited to attend the PlanWestbard kickoff meeting where the existing conditions, opportunities and constraints of the plan area will be discussed. RSVPs are encouraged but not required.

The first hour of the meeting will be an open house with the planners and include interactive map activities for attendees. The second hour will consist of a presentation about the planning process, schedule, and will conclude with a discussion of next steps.

Meeting Agenda:
7-8 p.m. Open House/Map Activity

8-9 p.m. Montgomery Planning Department Presentation about process, subject areas, schedule

The Westbard Sector Plan is one of the oldest plans still in use in Montgomery County, having last been revised in 1982. It is now being updated at the direction of the Montgomery County Council. The community will have an opportunity to review the Westbard Briefing Book at the kickoff meeting that will feature the existing conditions of the area.

The Plan’s Scope of Work, focused on the areas and issues identified at the kickoff session, will be presented at a meeting on Oct. 21. A week-long planning workshop scheduled for November will allow community members to give their perspective and provide feedback on the planning process.

Details:
What: Westbard Sector Plan Kickoff Meeting: Existing Conditions, Opportunities and Constraints
Who: Residents, property owners and anyone with an interest in the future of Westbard
When: Tuesday, Sept. 23 (7 – 9 p.m.)
Where: Walt Whitman High School cafeteria (7100 Whittier Blvd., Bethesda, MD)
Sign up: for the PlanWestbard-E-Newsletter
Call: the PlanWestbard Hotline for updates on upcoming planning events: 301-495-4567
Follow: updates on Twitter: @planwestbard
Learn More: www.montgomeryplanning.org/planwestbard
RSVP: for the Kickoff Meeting

Information and ideas gathered at the Sept. 23 meeting will inform the planning process. This is an opportunity for the community to contribute to planning for a successful Westbard that should continue to thrive for the next 20 years and beyond.

Learn more about the Westbard Sector Plan and how to get involved: www.montgomeryplanning.org/planwestbard

Westbard Background:
Westbard lies in the southwestern part of Montgomery County, approximately one mile from the D.C. boundary line. It is less than two miles from the commercial areas of Friendship Heights and Bethesda. The Westbard area is served by two major northwest to southeast highways: River Road and Massachusetts Avenue and is surrounded by well-established single-family neighborhoods. Over a period of years, the residential uses were built around the commercial/industrial areas, which extend along River Road and Westbard Avenue. The popular regional Capital Crescent Trail runs the length of Westbard.

Sep 9 14

Montgomery Village Master Plan Kickoff Meeting Scheduled – Oct. 1, 7:00 p.m.

by Bridget Schwiesow

Community invited by Montgomery Planning to participate in meeting about the future of Montgomery Village

SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a community meeting to begin a community dialogue about the Montgomery Village Master Plan on Wednesday, October 1 from 7 – 9 p.m. at the Watkins Mill High School cafeteria (10301 Apple Ridge Road, Gaithersburg, MD). Anyone who lives or works in Montgomery Village or has an interest in the future of this community is invited to attend the Montgomery Village Master Plan Kickoff Meeting where the existing conditions, opportunities and constraints, and the County planning process will be discussed. RSVPs are encouraged but not required.

Montgomery Village was included in the 1985 Gaithersburg Vicinity Plan and it is now the subject of its own master plan for the first time.

A future meeting will focus more specifically on areas and issues identified at this first master plan meeting and will involve the community discussing their vision for the future of Montgomery Village.

Details:
What: Montgomery Village Kickoff Meeting
Who: Residents, property owners and anyone with an interest in the future of Montgomery Village
When: Wednesday, October 1 (7 – 9 p.m.)
Where: Watkins Mills High School cafeteria (10301 Apple Ridge Rd, Gaithersburg, MD)
Learn More: www.montgomeryplanning.org/montgomeryvillage

Master Plan Background:
Montgomery Village has not been reviewed since the 1985 Gaithersburg Vicinity Master Plan, nor has it been the subject of a discrete County master plan in the past. Although Montgomery Village was within the boundaries of both the 1971 Gaithersburg Vicinity Master Plan and the 1985 Master Plan, neither plan contains narrative, recommendations or guidance for this community. When the Planning Department initiated an update to the Gaithersburg Master Plan in 2007, Montgomery Village was originally included within its boundaries.  However, with large swaths of land on both sides of I-270 presenting different planning issues and challenges, the Department realized the area was too big to be analyzed effectively. In 2008, the Department divided the large Gaithersburg Master Plan area into two planning efforts – one for the west side of I-270, which became the Great Seneca Science Corridor Master Plan (GSSC) – and one for the east side of I-270 – Gaithersburg East.  In 2014, the County Council directed the Planning Department to further refine the Gaithersburg East plan to have one plan for Montgomery Village and one plan for the remainder of Gaithersburg East. The Council also directed the Planning Director to work efficiently on the Montgomery Village Plan, with the goal of having a draft plan transmitted to the Council within 12 months of the plan start date.

 

Sep 5 14

Property Owners in County’s Urban Districts Eligible to Receive Free Trees

by Bridget Schwiesow

Casey Trees Community Tree Plantings (2)

Planning Department Expands Shades of Green program that provides free trees to eligible property owners in Montgomery County

SILVER SPRING, MD The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is offering free trees to property owners in certain areas of Montgomery County. The Shades of Green program, which was launched in 2012 as a pilot program, is now being extended to some additional areas of the county in an effort to enhance the tree canopy cover in in areas with a high impervious cover.

The Shades of Green program provides free trees to qualifying property owners.. The program is financed through the Forest Conservation Fund, which primarily includes contributions paid into the fund by developers when tree planting on their own development sites is impractical.

The expanded program includes property owners who live within the areas identified below.  They are invited to participate in the program to receive free trees by filling out a form at: www.montgomeryplanning.org/shadesofgreen.

-Germantown Center
-Shady Grove
-Olney Center
-Glenmont
-Grosvenor

To better understand Montgomery County’s tree cover, county planners analyzed the layer of leaves and branches that cover the ground when viewed from above. High-resolution aerial imagery revealed much lower tree canopy levels in urban areas than in more  suburban neighborhoods.  Increasing the number of trees in urban areas will increase the tree canopy cover  resulting in numerous benefits.

More trees will help to:

-beautify urban districts
-reduce street temperatures
-cool buildings, thereby reducing energy demands
-support the local economy
-improve street ambiance and quality of place
-enhance water, air and habitat quality
-reduce greenhouse gas, and
-reduce the Heat Island Effect

Learn more about eligibility and Shades of Green program details.

Sep 5 14

Community Invited to Greater Lyttonsville Visioning Workshop – Sept. 29  

by Bridget Schwiesow

NNOgreaterLP collage
Planners will ask community to give their feedback on vision for Greater Lyttonsville area  

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 participate in a community visioning workshop on Monday, Sept. 29 starting at
5 p.m. at the Planning Department Headquarters (8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD ). The event will provide attendees an opportunity to share their vision on how the Greater Lyttonsville area can be improved over the next twenty years. RSVP’s are encouraged but not required.

Building on the success of the last community meeting held in July, and a series of outreach events that reached out to the business community and families, the Greater Lyttonsville team has scheduled this second workshop to further encourage the community to help define the vision for the sector plan area.

The workshop, which will be held from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m., will have an open house format, with the presentation being given at 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., and 7:30 pm. At each one, Staff will present the planning process, recent feedback that has been provided regarding constraints and opportunities, as well as next steps. The workshop will also include an interactive exercise to explore community character as it relates to open spaces, streetscapes, environmental elements, land uses, buildings, and community facilities.

The Planning Board will receive a briefing at their regular meeting on Oct. 16 that will summarize the outcomes of the Sept. 29 workshop. All are invited to attend. The summary will also be available on the Planning Board website online one week before the Planning Board briefing.

Details:
Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Visioning Workshop

Monday, Sept. 29
5 – 8:30 p.m.
Planning Department Headquarters (8787 Georgia Ave. Silver Spring, MD 20910)
RSVP for the event
All community members and children are invited. Snacks will be provided

To get up to speed on the progress so far on the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan, view these videos below:

-The GreaterLP recap video from the July 15 community workshop

-Check out this video segment with planners Erin Banks and Melissa Williams and learn how to get involved with the future of shaping the #greaterLP area.

-Watch the GreaterLP Needs You short promotional video

Learn about the progress of the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan and how to get involved with shaping the future of this community.

Aug 29 14

Bicycle Planning Guidance Report Delivered to Planning Board on Sept. 4

by Bridget Schwiesow

ccl crossing

Planning Department’s Bicycle Planning Guidance Provides New Tools for Promoting Bicycling

SILVER SPRING, MDThe Montgomery County Planning Board, part of  The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission will be briefed on the Montgomery County Bicycle Planning Guidance report by transportation planners on Thursday, Sept 4. The document was produced for the Planning Department as part of a Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (WCOG) Transportation / Land Use Connections (TLC) grant program.

View the Bicycle Planning Guidance Planning Board agenda item for Sept. 4.

Bicycling in the metropolitan Washington region has changed substantially over the past few years. Changing attitudes toward bicycling, the introduction of bikeshare programs, and new facilities such as cycle tracks and buffered bike lanes that provide bicyclists with greater protection from traffic have led to a growth in bicycling in many communities. Bicycle planning has also changed significantly, with recent research guiding planners and communities to better understand what creates a bikeable network and how different types of bicycle facilities can expand that network.

By developing the Bicycle Planning Guidance document, Montgomery County planners seek to position the County among national leaders in bicycle planning. The tools that are presented will assist planners in identifying how much stress different road conditions create for bicyclists and what types of facilities are needed to reduce that stress and encourage bicycling among the general population. It also provides tools for identifying bicycle facilities that are most appropriate under different traffic speed and traffic volume conditions.

Planning Department staff envisions using the Bicycle Planning Guidance to assist in both the master planning process and facility planning review. It will help planners evaluate network connectivity and identify projects that are likely to have the most benefit in increasing bicycling in Montgomery County.

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

Aug 29 14

Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment Public Hearing Draft Available

by Bridget Schwiesow

Aspen Hill cover 2014
Public invited to review and testify on Public Hearing Draft plan at Planning Board meeting on Sept. 11.

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, Sept. 11, at 6:00 p.m., at their regularly scheduled Board Meeting which will be held in the Auditorium 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).

Review the Aspen Hill Minor Master Plan Amendment Public Hearing Draft.

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 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.

Aug 29 14

Westbard Sector Plan Kickoff Scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 23 at 7:00 p.m.

by Bridget Schwiesow

twitter_background_westbard

Community invited by Montgomery Planning to participate in meeting about the future of Westbard

SILVER SPRING, MD The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will hold a community meeting on the Westbard Sector Plan on Tuesday, Sept. 23, from 7-9 p.m. at Walt Whitman High School cafeteria (7100 Whittier Blvd., Bethesda, MD). Anyone who lives or works or has an interest in the future of the Westbard community is invited to attend the PlanWestbard kickoff meeting at which the existing conditions and opportunities and constraints of the plan area will be discussed. RSVP’s are encouraged but not required.

The meeting will give attendees an opportunity to hear about the existing conditions of the plan area, meet the planning team and learn about the planning process.

The Westbard Sector Plan is one of the oldest plans still in use in Montgomery County, having last been revised in 1982. It is now being updated at the direction of the Montgomery County Council to keep pace with the times and to reflect the changes in the community. At the kickoff meeting, the community will have an opportunity to review the Westbard Briefing Book which will focus on existing conditions of the area.

A meeting on Oct. 21 will present the Scope of Work which will focus on the areas and issues identified at the kickoff meeting. A week-long planning workshop is scheduled for November which will allow the community to give their perspective and provide feedback on the planning process.

Details:
What: Westbard Sector Plan Kickoff Meeting: Existing Conditions and Opportunities and Constraints
Who: Residents, property owners, and anyone with an interest in the future of Westbard
When: Tuesday, Sept. 23 (7 – 9 p.m.)
Where: Walt Whitman High School cafeteria (7100 Whittier Blvd., Bethesda, MD)
Sign up: for the PlanWestbard-E-Newsletter
Call: the PlanWestbard Hotline for updates on upcoming planning events: 301-495-4567
Follow: updates on Twitter: @planwestbard
Learn: more: www.montgomeryplanning.org/planwestbard

Information and ideas gathered at this meeting will inform the planning process. This is an opportunity for the community to contribute to planning for a successful Westbard that will continue to thrive for the next twenty years and beyond.

Learn more about the Westbard Sector Plan and how to get involved: www.montgomeryplanning.org/planwestbard

Background on Westbard:
Westbard lies in the southwestern part of Montgomery County, approximately one mile from the D.C. boundary line. It is less than two miles from the commercial areas of Friendship Heights and Bethesda. The Westbard area is served by two major northwest to southeast highways, River Road and Massachusetts Avenue, and is surrounded by well-established single-family neighborhoods. Over a period of years, residential uses were built around the commercial/industrial areas which extend along River Road and Westbard Avenue. The popular regional Capital Crescent Trail runs the length of Westbard.

Aug 15 14

Casey Anderson Sworn In As New Montgomery County Planning Board Chair

by Bridget Schwiesow

CAnderson-138

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 5 14

Sandy Spring Rural Village Public Hearing Scheduled – Sept. 4

by Bridget Schwiesow

sandy_spring_logo_red_25

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