October 17, 2014
Planning Board Agenda October 23
View the full agenda for the Montgomery Planning Board meeting on Thursday, October 23. Attend, watch or listen live!

Natali Fani-González Sworn In 

On Thursday, October 16, Natali Fani-González was sworn in as the newest member of the Montgomery County Planning Board. The Montgomery County Clerk of the Court, Loretta Knight, officiated at the ceremony held at the Planning Department's headquarters in Silver Spring. After the brief ceremony, Fani-González took her seat behind the dais to preside with her colleagues over her first Planning Board meeting. Learn more about Natali Fani-González.

Attend the Westbard Sector Plan Scope of Work Meeting - Tuesday, Oct. 21, 7 p.m.

Meet with planners and learn about the next steps of the planning process


The Montgomery County Planning Department will hold a Scope of Work community meeting on the Westbard Sector Plan on Tuesday, October 21, from 7-9 p.m. at the 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 Scope of Work meeting where planners will report feedback, provide information on the next steps of the planning process and explain how the Scope of Work will be used. RSVP today and learn more about the October 21 meeting

Silver Spring Placemaking - Workshop # 1 Recap


The first of three mini-charrettes were held at the Planning Department Headquarters on Wednesday, October 15 where more than 40 people came out to envision what the green space near the Transit Center could become. The event was hosted by Councilmember Hans Riemer, Montgomery Planning and the Silver Spring Urban District. Check out more details on the next event happening on October 29 at silverspringplacemaking.com. Check out this photo album link on the Montgomery Planning Facebook page.

Check out our Champion Trees!


Did you know there are some 200 Champion Trees located in Montgomery Parks? Learn about these extraordinary trees during the upcoming Champion Tree Tour on October 21. www.ParkPASS.org (Course #296049) $45.

What is Your Most Valuable Place?

Submit your best photos of Montgomery Village to the Photo Contest


Attendees and residents are urged to enter a photo contest, aimed at documenting the most valuable places in Montgomery Village. These images will help planners understand the priorities of residents and business owners as they develop concepts for various areas of the Village. Interested shutter bugs can send their pics to MVP@montgomeryplanning.org. Check out all of the details on the MVP Photo Contest. Learn more about the next steps for the Montgomery Village Plan

Maryland Emancipation Day Celebrations

October 31 - November 2 | Locations and times vary


Each November, Montgomery Parks celebrates the freedom of the enslaved population in Maryland. Among other adventures, you and your family can hike the Underground Railroad, tour1800s log cabins, visit a museum dedicated to the legacy of slavery, enjoy living history demonstrations and eat great food! Events held Saturday and Sunday are FREE, unless otherwise noted, and open to the public. This year's Maryland's Emancipation Day Celebrations are supported in part by Heritage Montgomery. More info here.

Trees Matter Symposium

Wednesday, November 5, 2014 7:30-4pm


Are you an arborist, landscape professional, environmental specialist, or citizen or professional interested in the latest research on trees, maintenance practices and issues, and more? Make plans to attend the 3rd Annual Trees Matter Conference, planned for Wednesday, November 5. Learn from some of the country's leading experts about innovative efforts to plant, protect and preserve trees in urban and suburban settings. More info here.

Montgomery Parks and Planning Present Newest Achievements to County Council

New Zoning Ordinance, affordable housing, urban parks and deer management are highlighted in Fall 2014 Semi-Annual Report


Montgomery Parks and Planning, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, presented its Fall 2014 Semi Annual Report to the Montgomery County Council on October 7. The report features accomplishments from the past six months as well as work that will be completed over the next six months. Some of the key initiatives for the Planning Department include implementation of the county's new zoning ordinance and revamping the development review process to be more efficient. The Parks Department highlighted their urban parks initiative and expansion plans for park trails. The 36- page Fall 2014 Semi-Annual Report is available online for review. 


Learn more about the Fall 2014 Semi-Annual Report. 

Interactive Map Reveals Current Development Projects Throughout Montgomery County

New Planning Department online map application allows the public to pinpoint locations and details of plans for neighborhoods.


The Montgomery County Planning Department, now offers an easy way for the public to find detailed information about development projects throughout the county. The Development Finder website, launched on October 7, offers an interactive map of the county and surrounding areas. Users can search by the address or location of the development or enter a simple term like "Wheaton" and be presented with the current projects in that area. Clicking on a specific community on the map also reveals numbered locations of developments that have been approved for construction or are pending approval. A sidebar summarizes the count and list of projects in that area. 


Learn more about the Development Finder map tool.

New Montgomery County Zoning Ordinance Takes Effect October 30, 2014

Updated code improves usability, simplifies development process.


Montgomery County has taken a giant step forward in improving the planning and development process and making the county a more desirable place to live. After years of community meetings, stakeholder discussions, work sessions and redrafting, the Montgomery County Planning Department has completed a new zoning ordinance and a new comprehensive zoning map for the county, both of which were approved by the Montgomery County Council. The new law takes effect on October 30, 2014. It is the most comprehensive update to the County's land use regulations since they were last revised in 1977. Piecemeal updates to the code over the past several decades resulted in a document with more than 1,200 pages, more than 120 zones, more than 400 uses, hundreds of footnotes and many confusing and sometimes contradictory provisions. The new Zoning Ordinance is a vast improvement over the former code in being more user-friendly and up-to-date. It embraces the most current planning concepts and offers new tools to achieve the goals of the county's master plans. The zoning ordinance encourages better development, enhances sustainability, and enables more mixed use zoning. 

Free Trees for Qualifying Property Owners in County's Priority Urban Districts

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


The Montgomery County Planning Department is offering free trees to qualifying property owners in certain urban districts of Montgomery County. The Shades of Green program, which was launched in 2012 as a pilot program, is now expanding to some additional areas of the county that have a high level of impervious surface in an effort to enhance the tree canopy cover. 


Learn more about the Shades of Green program.

Volunteer Opportunities
Montgomery Parks loves to have the community help through volunteering!  This fall we have several events and long term volunteer opportunities.  To see all of our current needs and how you can help, go to www.ParksVolunteers.org.

Some examples of what we are looking for:
Work on a Trail? - Click here!
Help out on one of our Halloween Trains? - Click here!
Want to help spread the word about our Gardens and Nature Centers? - Click here!
Help share History on Emancipation Day, Nov 1 & 2? Click here!

Work With Us
Interested in a career with The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission? Check out our list of rewarding job opportunities here.
Community Organization Lists 
Our online tool will make HOA organization email addresses available to web users seeking to notify residents about pending development or other issues. We rely on homeowners and civic organizations to help spread the word about development applications and planning initiatives. Homeowner's association leaders may want to update your organizational contact information to a generic 'mygroup@gmail.com' and update your contact information. 
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Have a Question About M-NCPPC Montgomery Parks?
Have a question about Montgomery Parks? Need to report a problem or maintenance issue in a park? Check out the Department's, easy to use Customer Service Center and find out how to contact us by phone and email. You'll also find an easy to use online form to submit questions or information about problems in parks.
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Have a Question About Planning?
Wondering about that sign advertising pending development in your community? Curious about how forest conservation works? Residents and others with questions about development, community plans, zoning, transportation, or environmental issues may find the answers they seek on a Department HELP page. The page features links, an online employee directory and an online question/comment form.
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