Agencies will transform downtown Silver Spring parking spaces into a temporary, pop-up park with a simulated separated bike lane at Fenton Street and Wayne Avenue
SILVER SPRING, MD – Montgomery Parks, the Montgomery County Planning Department, both part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) and Montgomery County Department of Transportation invite the public to celebrate PARK(ing) Day on September 16, 2016 by stopping by a pop-up park situated on parking spaces in downtown Silver Spring.
The pop-up park, open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., will include a simulated separated bike lane, games such as a large-size Jenga and life-size Scrabble, seated massages and more, courtesy of the Planning Department and Montgomery Parks. The parklet and bikeway will be located at the corner of Fenton Street and Wayne Avenue and will feature plants, seating, and the bean bag toss game, Cornhole.
PARK(ing) Day is an annual event held on the third Friday in September. Cities around the globe celebrate it to encourage discussion around issues related to urban infrastructure, including the role of open space, transit and the environment. Although the Silver Spring pop-up park is temporary, it promotes the idea of urban open space and encourages people to get more involved in the civic process to influence how public space is created and improve the quality of urban areas.
“PARK(ing) Day is a fun way to get people thinking about alternative uses for public space such as transforming parking spaces into parks,” says Casey Anderson, Chair of the Montgomery County Planning Board and Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission. “Bringing an ordinary parking space to life with greenery, activities and new transportation options, such as a bikeway, can help people visualize how we can take advantage of existing space in new and better ways. We should be thinking about these issues all year long – not just on one special day.”
The event will showcase the Planning Department’s Bicycle Master Planning team as they demonstrate how a separated bike lane would look with stationary bicycles in place in the parking space. Building more separated bike lanes around the County has been part of the discussion during the meetings on the Bicycle Master Plan. This plan will provide recommendations on improving connectivity and bicycle facilities throughout the County. Learn more about the Bicycle Master Plan.
About PARK(ing) Day:
PARK(ing) Day was invented in 2005 by Rebar, a San Francisco-based art and design studio to invite people to rethink the way streets are used and to promote discussion around the need for broad-based changes to urban infrastructure. Since its inception, the event has grown rapidly and in 2011 included 975 “park” installations in more than 160 cities on six continents. Park(ing) Day is an “open-source” project initiated by Rebar, but built by independent groups around the globe who adapt the project to advance creative, social or political causes that are relevant to their urban conditions.
Book honored with first place in illustrated text category of 2016 Washington Publishers Book Design and Effectiveness Competition
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, has won first place for its book, Montgomery Modern: Modern Architecture in Montgomery County, Maryland, 1930-1979, in the illustrated text (small to medium nonprofit) category of the Washington Publishers’ 2016 Book Design and Effectiveness Competition.
The 250-page, well-illustrated book is written by Clare Lise Kelly, a preservation planner and an architectural historian with the Planning Department’s Historic Preservation Office. It includes an inventory of key midcentury modern buildings and communities, and biographical sketches of the architects and developers who created them. The book was designed by Robert L. Wiser and edited by Nicole Diehlmann, and includes the color photography of Carol M. Highsmith.
The Washington Publishers Book Design and Effectiveness Competition recognizes excellence in bookmaking across the greater Washington, DC book publishing community. The competition’s judges evaluate the excellence of each book’s design and effectiveness in achieving the publisher’s goals, meeting the readers’ needs and reaching its market. Prizes are awarded in 15 categories, five designs for each of the three publisher categories – plus best of show.
The Planning Department will receive the award at a ceremony being held on Friday, September 23 at the Resource and Conservation Building in Washington, DC.
For more on the Department’s Montgomery Modern program and for information on how to purchase Montgomery Modern: Modern Architecture in Montgomery County, Maryland, 1930-1979, consult our web site.
Itinerary includes houses in the Tulip Hill and Oak Spring neighborhoods, The Primary Day School and Cedar Lane Unitarian Church
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is co-sponsoring a bus tour of midcentury modern houses and buildings in the County on Saturday, October 8 from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The event is being organized with Docomomo-DC and the Potomac Valley chapter of the American Institute of Architects as part of Docomomo-United States’ national tour day, titled “Modernism in Your Backyard.”
The tour will be led by preservation planner and architectural historian Clare Lise Kelly, who is the author of the Planning Department’s award-winning book, Montgomery Modern: Modern Architecture in Montgomery County, Maryland, 1930-1979.
The bus tour will explore the Montgomery County work of Deigert and Yerkes, a leading modernist architecture firm in the Washington, DC area, best known for the National Arboretum Administration Building The partnership of Robert Campbell Deigert and David Norton Yerkes, which operated from 1947 to 1967, created distinctive designs characterized by their variety in materials and textures, surprising angles and contrasting spaces.
On the itinerary are the rustic modern houses of Tulip Hill (1950-55) and Oak Spring (1966), lunch at The Primary Day School (1955) and a concluding reception at Pietro Belluschi’s Cedar Lane Unitarian Church (1958). Bus pickup and drop-off is at the Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro Kiss and Ride.
Tickets for the tour cost $50 per person and $40 for members of Potomac Valley chapter of AIA and Docomomo-DC. They can be purchased here.
Learn more about the Planning Department’s Montgomery Modern programs.
Developers, architects, landscape architects, designers, property owners and community members are invited to attend the Celebrate Design reception and awards event at the Silver Spring Civic Building
SILVER SPRING, MD –The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is inviting everyone with an interest in excellent architecture, landscape architecture and urban design to attend Celebrate Design on Thursday, October 20, 2016 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Silver Spring Civic Building (1 Veterans Plaza, Silver Spring, MD).
The winner of the Planning Department’s second annual Design Excellence Award competition will be announced during the celebration, which will also include the annual awards ceremony of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Potomac Valley Chapter. One of the highlights of the evening will be the presentation, titled “Design Excellence: Lasting, Comprehensive and Inspirational,” given by architect Edward Feiner, FAIA. Feiner is the Design Leadership Council Director of Perkins + Will and former Chief Architect of the United States General Services Administration, who launched a design excellence program for federal architecture.
The Planning Department’s annual Design Excellence Award seeks to recognize exceptional work in architecture, landscape architecture and urban design that has been completed in Montgomery County over the past decade. More than 20 entries to the competition have been submitted by architects, developers and property owners. The goal of the awards program is to promote top-notch design and improve the quality of the built environment throughout the County.
The winner will be selected in September by an outside jury of accomplished professionals in the fields of architecture, landscape architecture and urban design. The 2016 jurors are:
-Elinor Bacon of ER Bacon Development in Washington, DC.
-Shalom Baranes of Shalom Baranes Associates Architects in Washington, DC.
-Stephanie Bothwell of Stephanie Bothwell Urban and Landscape Design in Washington, DC.
-Yolanda Cole of Hickok Cole Architects in Washington, DC.
Review the bios of the jury.
Celebrate Design Awards Ceremony
Thursday, October 20, 2016
6:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Silver Spring Civic Building (1 Veterans Plaza, Silver Spring, MD)
Ticket price: $35
6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Opening reception.
7:30 – 8:45 p.m. Awards presentation by the AIA Potomac Valley and the Montgomery County Planning Department.
Featured Speaker: Architect Edward Feiner, FAIA, of Perkins + Will.
8:45 – 9:30 p.m. Dessert reception.
Purpose of Design Excellence Award
In June 2015, the Department launched its first Design Excellence Award program to achieve the following goals:
-To recognize the best examples of architecture, landscape architecture and urban design in the County, and increase public awareness of this world-class design excellence.
-To promote built work that contributes to the creation of pedestrian-oriented, walkable neighborhoods that enrich and contribute to the greater community.
-To show how physical design can lead to greater health, economic opportunity and environmental sustainability.
Learn more about the Montgomery County Planning Department’s Design Excellence initiative.
Winners will receive gift cards and their photos will become part of the Bicycle Master Plan or other Planning Department documents
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, invites the public to enter its Bicycle Master Plan Photo Contest, to be held from September 12 to October 7. The winning images will become part of the master plan document and other publications produced by the Planning Department.
The contest provides the opportunity to showcase cyclists in urban, suburban and rural settings in Montgomery County. Action shots, staged shots and photos showing the joy of being on two wheels can be submitted in the following categories:
Categories of photos
- Best family
- Best commuter
- Best recreational
- Best kid shot
- Other (errands)
Participation is free and open to the public. Each person can enter up to five (5) photos, which must be submitted electronically. The contest will begin on Monday, September 12, 2016 and the submission period will end on Friday, October 7 at 4 p.m. For more details, consult the online contest page.
Semifinalists will be selected by a jury of professional planners and photographers and the winner will be selected by the public in an online poll. The photos with the most votes in each category will receive $100 in gift cards and will be promoted on social media. All photos will be eligible to be included in the Bicycle Master Plan.
Sign up for the Bicycle Master Plan e-letter
Follow the team on Twitter: @MCBikePlan
What to enter
High quality digital images capturing the best of cycling in Montgomery County (see categories listed above) can focus on people running errands, commuting, cycling for exercise and fun, family cycling and group rides, among others. All photos must be original, not copies of existing images.
For some examples, check out these photos that have been a part of previous documents for the Bicycle Master Plan. See the Bicycle Master Plan Framework Report.
If you choose to include people other than yourself in your submission, you are responsible for obtaining the necessary releases from the individuals depicted, and must be able to provide copies of those releases to M-NCPPC upon request. Entrants must not submit images that infringe on the rights of any other photographer or person.
All photographs should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared. Photos that have been digitally altered beyond standard optimization (removal of dust, cropping, reasonable adjustments to exposure, color and contrast, etc.) will be disqualified. Multiple exposures that have been combined to produce a single “High Dynamic Range” image are acceptable. Images that do not meet these requirements may or may not be judged at the judging panel’s sole discretion.
Photo captions must accompany all submissions, and should include:
- The subject of the image.
- The location in which the image was taken.
- A description of the trip, circumstances, etc., that may be helpful for judges.
- Your name as you would like it to appear in the plan or document if the photo is chosen.
Please clearly label all photos to assist judges in determining eligibility.
All photographs will be credited with the caption “Photo by Person’s Name.” M-NCPPC has final approval of any language that appears on its website with any of the photos and will not promote or endorse third-party products or services.
The Montgomery County Planning Department Bicycle Master Plan Photo Contest is open to ANYONE at least 18 years of age. The contest is open to all participants as long as the laws of their jurisdiction allow participation. M-NCPPC employees, board members and photographers currently paid by M-NCPPC and the immediate families of such individuals, regardless of residence or citizenship, are NOT eligible.
Your submission of any photographs to the Montgomery County Planning Department for the Bicycle Master Plan Photo Contest is subject to the Terms and Conditions listed on the online contest page.
National Capital Area Chapter of the American Planning Association recognizes digital Bicycle Stress Map as a valuable tool
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is this year’s recipient of a 2016 Award for an Outstanding Tool from the National Capital Area Chapter of the American Planning Association.
The chapter award recognizes the value of the Department’s Bicycle Stress Map in helping to develop the data-driven Bicycle Master Plan for Montgomery County. The purpose of the digital map is to understand impediments to bicycling and to identify and prioritize the changes that are needed to create a low-stress bicycling environment for people who say they would be interested in bicycling, but do not currently ride because they have safety concerns.
Planning Department staff evaluated more than 3,500 miles of roads and trails in the County to determine the level of stress on each road segment and intersection and assign a value to it, from high stress to low stress.
“This award recognizes the hard work of the Bicycle Master Plan team,” says Planning Director Gwen Wright. “The Bicycle Stress Map is making bicycle planning accessible to the community in a whole new way.”
The planning team will receive the award at a ceremony to be held on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at the Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC.
“Montgomery County is working to elevate bicycle planning to the level of analysis that is used for traffic and transit planning by gaining a deeper understanding of what connectivity means for people who bicycle,” says Project Manager David Anspacher. “I am excited that the Bicycle Master Plan team was recognized for this cutting-edge tool.”
View the Montgomery County Planning Department Bicycle Stress Map.
Background on the Bicycle Stress Map
What is traffic stress?
For most people the decision to bicycle includes consideration of whether road conditions, such as traffic volume and traffic speed, exceed their threshold for stress. Since most adults are uncomfortable bicycling on roads with four or more lanes of traffic or a posted speed limit of 30 mph or higher, the opportunities to get from Point A to Point B in Montgomery County are limited unless a separated bikeway such as a path, trail or separated bike lane can be provided.
What does the bike stress map do?
This publicly accessible tool displays the data in a way that can inform the public about bicycling in the County and help decision makers prioritize bicycling improvements.
- Users can toggle between stress levels to reveal the bicycling network available to people, depending on the different levels of traffic stress they tolerate.
- Videos capture the look and feel of different stress levels.
- Connectivity analyses show how well each rail station, public school, library, recreation center and regional park is connected to the surrounding neighborhood.
- A customized bike shed analysis can be done to reveal the areas that can be reached by bicycle without exceeding one’s comfort level.
How has the Bicycle Stress Map helped planning efforts?
Preliminary analysis from the Bicycle Stress Map has revealed the following:
- While about 70 percent of County road miles are suitable for most adult bike riders, only a fraction of actual trips can be completed on a low-stress network, due to the inability to reach destinations with minimal detours.
- Only 18 percent of people living within a two-mile distance of a Metrorail station can reach that station on a low-stress bicycling network.
- Connectivity is poor around schools. Elementary, middle, and high schools are connected to only 20 percent, 10 percent and 5 percent of the residences within their service area, respectively, by a child-appropriate bicycle network.
Questions or Comments?
Contact: David Anspacher, Bicycle Master Plan Project Manager
Connect With Us
Sign up: for the Bicycle Master Plan eletter
Board will review White Flint 2 Sector Plan Working Draft and conduct first work session for the Bicycle Master Plan
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Board, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), will hold its first meeting since its summer recess on Thursday, September 8.
On the Planning Board’s September 8 agenda is the review of the White Flint 2 Sector Plan Working Draft; a work session for the Bicycle Master Plan Framework; and approval of the Sectional Map Amendment to the Westbard Sector Plan, among other items.
The Planning Board has a full agenda during each of its meetings in September to include the following:
-The September 15 meeting will consider a request for approval of the Scope of Work for the Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro Area Minor Master Plan.
-On September 22, the Board will hear public testimony and consider requests for water and sewer extensions to various properties. Based on this feedback, the Board will present its recommendations to the County Council at a later date.
-At the last meeting of the month on September 29, the Planning Board will be briefed on implementation issues related to the White Flint 2 Sector Plan.
Planning Board agendas are posted 10 days in advance of the meeting date. For a full list of items on the Board’s agenda and details about each meeting, consult the Planning Board Agenda. The public is invited to attend all open Board sessions.
The Planning Board is back in session, community meetings will continue and a photo contest for the Bicycle Master Plan will begin held this month
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is pleased to announce its September 2016 calendar of events. These meetings offer opportunities for the Planning Department staff to discuss policies and engage with the public. Review the full list of events and ongoing plans and projects below, and go online to www.montgomeryplanning.org for more details.
Stay connected to us online by following Montgomery Planning Department news and information on Twitter: @montgomeryplans and like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/montgomeryplanning.
Montgomery County Planning Department Events in September 2016
September 1-October 18 – Buy your ticket to Celebrate Design on October 20, an awards event co-sponsored by the Planning Department and Potomac Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. The winner of the Planning Department’s second annual Design Excellence Award will be announced at the event, to be held at the Silver Spring Civic Building from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Each ticket is $35 and can be purchased online.
September 8 – The Planning Board returns from its summer recess to hold its first September meeting. View the Planning Board Agenda for details.
September 12 – Get geared up for the Bicycle Master Plan Photo Contest happening through October 7. Planners are looking for the best digital photos showing cycling in Montgomery County. Top winners in five categories have the opportunity to win gift cards and have their photos become a part of the Bicycle Master Plan and be promoted online. Learn more about the contest and how you can get involved: montgomeryplanning.org/bikeplan
September 12 – The White Flint Implementation Advisory Committee will hold a meeting beginning at 7 p.m. at the Wall Local Park/Kennedy Shriver Aquatic Center (5900 Executive Boulevard, North Bethesda, MD) to discuss new developments and the Gables White Flint Site Plan Amendment.
September 13 – The Montgomery County Council will hold a public hearing for the updated Subdivision Staging Policy starting at 7:30 p.m. (Third Floor Hearing Room, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, MD). To testify, sign up online or call 240-777-7803. The deadline to sign up to testify is 10 a.m.
September 14 – The Grosvenor-Strathmore Minor Master Plan Amendment will be discussed at a public workshop led by the FiveSquares development team. The workshop will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Mansion at Strathmore (10701 Rockville Pike, North Bethesda, MD).
September 15 – At its meeting, the Planning Board will review the Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro Are Minor Master Plan Scope of Work, among other items. View the Planning Board Agenda for details.
September 19 – The Planning Department will hold a public meeting about short-term residential rentals, such as Airbnb, from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Department’s auditorium (8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD). To attend, please RSVP online. Learn more about the Short-Term Residential Rental project.
September 19 – The White Flint 2 Sector Plan team will present the plan’s preliminary recommendations to the Friends of White Flint, starting at 6:30 p.m. at the Bethesda North Conference Center (5701 Marinelli Road, North Bethesda, MD).
September 20 – The Montgomery County Council will hold a public hearing for the Westbard Sectional Map Amendment starting at 1:30 p.m. (Third Floor Hearing Room, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, MD). To testify, sign up online or call 240-777-7803. The deadline to sign up to testify is 5 p.m. on September 19.
September 22 – The Planning Board will hold a meeting to discuss regulatory cases and master plans. View the Planning Board Agenda for details.
September 27 – The Montgomery County Council will hold a public hearing for the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan starting at 7:30 p.m. (Third Floor Hearing Room, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, MD). To testify, sign up online or call 240-777-7803. The deadline to sign up to testify is 10 a.m.
September 29 – The Planning Board meeting will include a briefing on the White Flint 2 Sector Plan. View the Planning Board Agenda for details.
Residents, business owners and stakeholders invited to hear from planners and County agency representatives about short-term home rentals, such as Airbnb
SILVER SPRING, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is holding a public meeting on Monday, September 19 from 7 to 9 p.m. at its headquarters (8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD) to answer questions and solicit feedback related to the regulation of online-advertised, short-term home rentals, such as Airbnb.
At the meeting, planning staff will provide information on short-term rental regulations currently in place in other jurisdictions around the country. Representatives from the Montgomery County Department of Permitting Services, County Department of Health and Human Services and County Department of Housing and Community Affairs will be in attendance to answer questions pertaining to this use.
RSVP for the Short-Term Residential Rental community meeting on September 19.
This second meeting is a follow-up to the July 18 community meeting where more than 60 attendees listened to presentations by industry representatives and offered feedback on issues ranging from existing illegal short-term residential rentals to the benefits of allowing this type of use in the County. Of particular concern was the possible impact of short-term residential rentals on residential neighborhoods.
Learn more about short-term residential rentals.
What is a short-term residential rental?
Online services, such as Airbnb, Flipkey, HomeAway and VRBO, connect homeowners and property managers with travelers who seek the amenities of a home for a short-term rental stay. Currently, a short-term residential rental (less than a month, typical of companies like Airbnb) is not allowed in Montgomery County unless the property has been approved for use as a bed and breakfast. However, the County allows a homeowner to rent out a home, or part of a home, for 30 days or longer.
What type of laws are being proposed to regulate short-term rentals?
The County Council is considering expanding the opportunities for short-term tenancy so homeowners can participate in the sharing economy. The Council introduced legislation (ZTA 16-03) in February 2016 to relax the requirements on short-term rentals. As proposed, this new law would allow Airbnb or other, similar short-term residential rentals, but with some limitations. ZTA 16-03 was introduced in conjunction with Bill 2-16, which would update the licensing requirements for all transient housing, including a bed and breakfast.
After holding a public hearing on ZTA 16-03 and Bill 2-16, the County Council requested that the Planning Department reach out to County residents and stakeholders to seek their input regarding the regulation of short-term residential rentals. As part of this effort, staff will study regulations adopted by other jurisdictions locally and nationally that may be helpful in crafting new legislation in Montgomery County.
Once planners have gathered additional information on the topic and received feedback from the public, they will present recommendations to the Planning Board and County Council.
Log house was moved from freedman settlement near Poolesville, Maryland, and reassembled in the Smithsonian’s newest museum on the National Mall, due to open on September 24
Silver Spring, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, initiated an effort to have an 1870s house built by former slaves near Poolesville, MD featured in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. The museum, located on the National Mall in Washington, DC, will open to the public on Saturday, September 24, 2016.
In 1979, the Reconstruction-era home was identified in the County’s Locational Atlas and Index of Historic Sites, which lists potentially historic sites and districts in Montgomery County.
The original log house was constructed circa 1874 by former slave Richard Jones, who with his brother Erasmus, founded the freedman settlement known as Jonesville. Over time, other family members settled in Jonesville, building houses of their own. Most of the original Jonesville residences have been demolished or relocated. The Jones House is one of the few surviving examples of a Reconstruction-era home built by freed slaves in the country.
In 2008, new owners of the house. who wanted to tear down the old structure and build a new home on the property, took their case to the County’s Historic Preservation Commission. Recognizing the Jones House was too dilapidated to save, the Commission approved its demolition but suggested the owners support the documentation of the original house’s history through archaeology, photographs and oral histories from the surviving members of the Jones family. Learn more about the Historic Preservation Commission.
Acting on the Commission’s recommendation, Scott Whipple, Supervisor of the Planning Department’s Historic Preservation Office, then called Smithsonian museum curator Paul Gardullo to find out if he would be interested in participating in the Jones House documentation effort. Gardullo seized this opportunity to acquire a rare, post-slavery artifact, disassemble it and store it so it could eventually be featured in the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which was being developed at the time.
The curator and his team have since reconstructed the original log building without its subsequent additions. The two-story house will be one of the largest exhibits in the new museum.
“County residents should be proud that the museum included this house from Jonesville to help tell the post-slavery story,” says Whipple. “It’s very exciting to realize that something this historically important, which otherwise would have been lost forever, is instead being added to the national museum whose purpose is recount the African American experience in this country. I’m so pleased the museum took on the Jones House project and really hope our residents will visit the museum to see it.”
For more about black heritage in Montgomery County, consult the digital map of historic African American communities and sites that was launched earlier this year.