Two options find favor in Montgomery council committee -- Gazette.Net


The Montgomery County Council will work without a recommendation regarding Wheaton redevelopment plans when it continues discussion on the issue during a Monday worksession.

Two redevelopment approaches found equal support during a Wednesday worksession consisting of members of the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy committee, and the Planning, Housing and Economic Development committee.

The plans under discussion differ in their approach for redevelopment plans including the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission headquarters building and the downtown Parking Lot 13.

County Council President Nancy Navarro and council members Valerie Ervin and Hans Reimer voted for an option that would place the headquarters building at the current site of the Mid-County Regional Services Center on the south side of Reedie Drive.

Under this option, the park and planning commission would take charge of the headquarters building project while the county would manage the area’s remaining redevelopment components, including Parking Lot 13.

Montgomery County Planning Board Chair Francoise Carrier said the commission is “happy to contribute our land and our presence” to Wheaton, but in doing so wants to take on the responsibilty of the headquarters project.

On the other side, council members George Leventhal, Marc Elrich and Nancy Floreen voted for an option in which the county would solicit developer proposals for all components of the area’s redevelopment, including the commission headquarters and Lot 13.

David Dise, director for the county Department of General Services, said Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett’s support also lies with the developer approach that would explore further options for several county parcels.

The county has already seen interest from several developers, Dise said, and county staff is developing an RFP that should be completed and advertised by the end of the month.