December 11, 2015
Planning Board Agenda
Attend or watch the Montgomery County Planning Board Thursday, December 17. View the full agenda for that meeting here.
Montgomery County Planning Department Announces Calendar of December Events
Planning Board wraps up 2015 agenda with work sessions devoted to plans for Bethesda, Westbard and Lyttonsville

The Montgomery County Planning Department is pleased to announce its calendar for December 2015. These events offer opportunities for the Board and Planning Department staff to engage with communities within Montgomery County. Review the full list of events below and go online to for more details on projects and plans. Learn more about the December Calendar of Events.
Emerald Ash Borer in Montgomery Parks

A non-native invasive beetle in Montgomery County is wreaking havoc on ash trees, many which are located in stream valleys on parkland. Learn more on the department's plan to address the issue here.
Winter Festivals in Montgomery Parks 

Winter is right around the corner...and we have lots of festivals and events to help you enjoy the season! Check out for a list of major events happening in late November through February. 
NOTICE: Storm Water Management Work on Little Falls Parkway SVU#1 

Storm Water Management improvements between River Road and Massachusetts Avenue on Little Falls Parkway (SVU- Area #1) is scheduled to begin December 2015. The project will affect traffic during non-rush hour times. Please use caution as alternating lane closures are expected during work hours.
Public Input Needed on Wheaton Regional Park Master Plan Update

Montgomery Parks is planning updates for Wheaton Regional Park and is soliciting input from the public. To find out more about the plan and how you can share your ideas please visit 
Accessibility Improvements Continues

Accessibility Improvements continues at Potomac Community Neighborhood Park, Pleasant View Local Park, Damascus Regional Park, and Ayrlawn Local Park. For more information on these and other accessibility projects please visit: Accessibility Information for Montgomery Parks webpage.
Work Scheduled to Improve Access to Olney Family Neighborhood Park

Work is scheduled to improve access to Olney Family Neighborhood Park, including access to the trails for residents entering from the Treadway side. For more information, click here
Garden of Lights Returns to Brookside Gardens

Make a new holiday tradition at the Garden of Lights Walk Through Holiday Light Display starting November 27 through January 3! Tickets are on sale now at Brookside Gardens' Gift Shop. Visit for more information.
December 14 Community Meeting on Rock Spring Master Plan Will Focus on Future Development in the Area

The Montgomery County Planning Department is holding a community meeting on December 14, 2015 for the Rock Spring Master Plan. The planner-led event will be held at Walter Johnson High School (6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda) from 7 to 9 p.m. to discuss the goals of the Rock Spring Master Plan and development in the planning area.

This meeting builds on the October 28 community meeting, which focused on development projects planned for Rock Spring. Already approved for the area is 1 million square feet of mixed-use development, including 210,000 square feet of new retail, a 200-room hotel and more than 800 residential units.

At the December 14 meeting, staff will discuss an approved mixed-use project on the Ourisman Ford site as well as potential plans for the Wildwood Medical Center site. In addition, planners will present possible ways of transforming Rock Spring Drive and Fernwood Road into more hospitable boulevards. Attendees will have the opportunity to provide feedback during break-out sessions focused on transportation, recreation, parks and placemaking.

View the Rock Spring Master Plan Scope of Work presented to the Planning Board on October 8.
Planning Board Will Hold Work Session for the Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan on Tuesday, December 15

The Montgomery County Planning Board, will conduct a work session to review the Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan on Tuesday, December 15 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Planning Department headquarters (8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring. MD). This special Tuesday session precedes the Planning Board's regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday, December 17. Learn more here.

View the December 15 Staff Report for the Bethesda Sector Plan work session.
Community Invited to Attend the December 15 Meeting Focused on Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Projects in the Life Sciences Center Area

The Montgomery County Planning Department is hosting a community meeting on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Academic and Research Building (9601 Medical Center Drive, Rockville, MD, Room 106-110) on the Johns Hopkins Montgomery County Campus to update the community on bicycle and pedestrian planning activities in the Life Sciences Center area.

This community event will focus on efforts to create new transportation and recreational networks for people who walk and bike. The Draft Life Sciences Center Bicycle Network Proposal aims to create separated bike lanes and provide long-term bicycle parking stations in the Life Sciences Center District of the Greater Seneca Science Corridor. Separated bike lanes (or cycle tracks) create a low-stress environment for cyclists that can make bicycling a mainstream transportation option because they provide physical separation from both traffic and pedestrians. Learn more here.
Montgomery County Planning Board Will Hold its Final Work Session on Westbard Sector Plan on Thursday, December 17

The Montgomery County Planning Board will hold its fourth and final work session for the Westbard Sector Plan at its meeting on Thursday, December 17 at the Planning Department headquarters (8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, MD).

It is anticipated that the Planning Board will vote to accept the Planning Board Draft of the Sector Plan and transmit it to the Montgomery County Council and to the Office of the County Executive. The County Council has tentatively scheduled a public hearing on the Planning Board Draft of the Westbard Sector Plan for Tuesday, January 26, 2016. Learn more here.
Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan Revised Working Draft to be Presented to Planning Board on December 17

The Montgomery County Planning Department will present the revised Working Draft of the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan on Thursday, December 17 to the Montgomery County Planning Board at the Planning Department headquarters (8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, MD).

The Working Draft has been revised to address issues that were raised by the community over zoning classifications, district boundaries and language in the Plan Draft. If the current draft of the Sector Plan is approved by the Planning Board, staff will request a public hearing for the Plan on February 11, 2016. Learn more here.
New Development Database Tool Launched by County Executive, Planning Department and Montgomery Business Development Corporation

The Montgomery County Planning Department has helped the Office of the County Executive launch a new online tool in partnership with the Montgomery Business Development Corporation for tracking the progress of development in the County. Called the Development Database, this digital resource builds on existing digital information about planned and projects under construction. Its introduction was announced at a press conference held on Monday, November 23 in the County's Executive's Conference Room in Rockville.

"Montgomery County has made tremendous investments in making our community more attractive, walkable and vibrant, even during the worst economic downturn," said County Executive Ike Leggett, "because quality of place is essential to attracting businesses and talent."

Learn more here.
Planning Department Seeks Presentation Proposals for Makeover Montgomery 3 Conference in May 2016

The Montgomery County Planning Department invites proposals for presentations at its conference, Makeover Montgomery 3: Balancing Change in America's Suburbs, to be held May 4-6, 2016 in College Park and Silver Spring, Md.

Interested planners, architects, developers, real estate professionals, economists, social scientists, ecologists and others can submit proposals online through Friday, January 8, 2016 at 5 p.m. The selected speakers will present at the Silver Spring Civic Building (1 Veterans Plaza, Silver Spring, MD) on May 5 and 6. Assistance with travel-related expenses may be available for out-of-town speakers.

Makeover Montgomery 3 is being organized through a partnership between the Montgomery County Planning Department and National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education at the University of Maryland. The 2016 event follows similar conferences held in 2011 and 2014 by the Planning Department and University of Maryland. Learn more here.
Park Projects:
  • Sligo Creek Parkway: WSSC Project will require the parking lot on Sligo Creek Parkway south of Wayne Avenue to be closed for 6-9 months. For more info on WSSC projects in the park, please click here.
  • Ellsworth Urban Park:  Park improvements are underway to construct a new Dog Park. Parts of the park will be inaccessible to the public as work includes improved storm water management and better access to park. Tennis Courts and playground will not be affected. Click here for more info.
  • Waters Landing Local Park: Playground renovations are underway requiring playground to be closed this fall. Work will include storm water management and improved access to park facilities. Public should use caution getting to tennis courts and picnic shelter as paths will be repaved. Click here for more info.
Trail Work in Parks
Bikers and Runners should use caution as improvements are taking place on several trails in Montgomery Parks:
  • NEW: Black Hill Trail Connector Project to build a new shared-use natural surface six-mile trail along the western side of Little Seneca Lake in Black Hill Regional Park is scheduled to begin this fall. Numerous construction phases will take place over the course of the next year until the trail is complete.
  • NOTICE: Black Hill Trail work will close portions of the trail, including bridge work at the Ten Mile Creek tributary to Little Seneca Lake, for repairs. Work areas will close access to the trail head at the end of Ten Mile Creek Road, Osprey Heights Loop, Lake View Loop and Turkey Hill Loop.  The Cool Spring Trail will remain open during the construction which is scheduled to be completed by the Spring 2016.  
  • Rock Creek Trail work continues on the trail in the Rock Creek Regional Park area around Baltimore Road and Norbeck Road begins this October. Project will require partial closure of trail for bridge work, stream work and the repaving of the trail leading to bridge. A detour will be posted when trail repaving begins. Watch for detour signs and use caution around work areas.
  • Rock Creek Hiker-Biker Trail Storm water management work is scheduled to continue this fall, between Franklin Street and Knowles Avenue. Trail will be intermittingly closed. Please follow detours.
  • Western Piedmont Trail is closed below Hyattstown Mill where the trail crosses Little Bennett Creek for installation of a new bridge. Work is expected to continue for a year.
  • Paint Branch Trail will have restricted use between Randolph Road and Fairland Road due to WSSC work.
  • Rock Creek Trail Signage Installation for better wayfinding on the trail and adjacent neighborhood trail connectors leading to main trail continues south on the 14 mile Rock Creek Hiker-Biker Trail. Please use caution around work areas scheduled to go from Rock Creek Regional Park- Lake Needwood to the DC Line. For more information, click here.  
For more information on Montgomery Parks Trails please visit
View Montgomery Parks Program GUIDES Online
Click here to see all the various programs, classes and events Montgomery Parks has to offer to you and your family. Browse the eGuide from your computer or cell via at Montgomery Parks eGuides.