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M-NCPPC Wheaton Headquarters

Planning and Parks Departments will collocate and share amenities with four county agencies in 14-story building now under construction

Background

The new home of The Montgomery County Planning Board, Montgomery Parks and the Montgomery Planning Department will be in downtown Wheaton. The 14-story building, located on Reedie Drive near the Wheaton Metro Station, will replace the county-owned Wheaton Market Place parking lot with a LEED Platinum-rated, mixed-use building, a town square and an underground public parking garage. Several of the county agencies will move into the building in 2019, while the Parks and Planning Departments are scheduled to occupy their new offices in 2020.

M-NCPPC will own the 308,000 square-foot building. Offices and shared spaces for the Planning and Parks Departments will be located on the top four levels. The structure also will house the county Departments of Environmental Protection, Permitting Services, Recreation and Health and Human Services, as well as the Office of Community Use of Public Facilities and the Mid-County Regional Services Center/Urban District. The underground public garage will supply 400 parking spaces.

Wheaton Revitalization

Hundreds of government employees will be relocated to the new building complex in downtown Wheaton, which will help to revitalize the area with more people to patronize local businesses. The town square will provide a central meeting place to attract people to this area–no such public environment existed in this location before. Staff will be encouraged to walk, bike and take transit to work, reducing traffic and adding more pedestrian and street activity to downtown Wheaton.

Project Progress

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation is managing the design and construction of the building. The project team includes developer StonebridgeCarras and general contractor Clark Construction Group of Bethesda; architect Gensler and landscape architect Oculus of Washington, DC; mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineer GHT Limited of Arlington, VA; structural engineer SK&A and civil engineer Bohler Engineering of Washington, DC.

View the MCDOT Project webpage.

“We are pleased that members of the Wheaton community could help us break ground on our new headquarters building,” said Montgomery Planning Board Chair Casey Anderson at the groundbreaking ceremony. “We are excited about our upcoming move to the neighborhood and proud of the work that went into making sure this building would set a new standard for excellence in the design of public facilities in Montgomery County.”

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Proposed view from Reedie Drive (front), looking north

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Lobby entry

Lobby entry

Wheaton Headquarters Lobby

Lobby

Design

Transparency of civic process symbolized

The mixed-use building with ground-floor retail and upper-floor offices will face directly onto a landscaped plaza and town square, designed to become the new heart of downtown Wheaton. The large, inviting entrance lobby will be framed in glass and illuminate the new plaza at night to symbolize the transparency and civic-mindedness of government. This two-story space will be used for displays, celebrations and other events.

The open lobby will include an information desk and publicly accessible grand staircase leading to the Planning Board auditorium on the second floor. A living wall of greenery will extend on one side of the space to represent the building’s environmentally sensitive design.

A staircase will extend through the entire height of the building to encourage employees from different county agencies to communicate while they travel up and down the building. A daycare center will be located on the third floor.

Parks and Planning Department offices on the top four floors will incorporate whiteboards for brainstorming ideas, brightly colored furnishings and wall murals in hallways and conference rooms. The Department is currently working with Gensler to fine-tune the design of the interiors.

Sustainable design strategies outside and inside

The new headquarters is designed to become one of the first government buildings in the state of Maryland to be LEED Platinum-certified. Among its green features are geothermal heating and cooling, integral solar panels, roof gardens, electricity generation and gray water reuse.

The exterior will incorporate rain screen facades and the plaza and streetscapes will be designed with landscaped elements to manage stormwater onsite. In addition, the building is located within walking distance of Metrorail and bus lines.

The office interiors are designed to achieve a LEED Gold rating through energy efficient lighting, abundant daylight, locally sourced building materials and recycled materials.

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation is managing the design and construction of the building. The project team includes developer StonebridgeCarras and general contractor Clark Construction Group of Bethesda; architect Gensler and landscape architect Oculus of Washington, DC; mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineer GHT Limited of Arlington, VA; structural engineer SK&A and civil engineer Bohler Engineering of Washington, DC.

Wheaton Headquarters groundbreaking ceremony



Taste of Wheaton and M-NCPPC Building Groundbreaking

Questions/Comments? Contact:

Judie Lai, Architect, project manager for Wheaton Headquarters judie.lai@montgomeryparks.org
Paul Mortensen, Senior Urban Designer paul.mortensen@montgomeryplanning.org

Last Updated: October 9, 2017