In case you have been wondering what is going on with the old MCAD building, it is being scheduled to be demolished in another couple of weeks (fingers crossed). For approximately three months, asbestos was removed from the building earlier this year. We thank M-NCPPC for ensuring the careful removal of asbestos from the building. We are very grateful that the building will be demolished soon, and the park vision will truly then be a reality for all to enjoy.
I am very pleased to inform you that this afternoon the Montgomery County Planning Board voted unanimously in favor to save the former School of Art and Design at Montgomery College (MCAD) property as the new Carroll Knolls Local Park!!!
Congratulations!!! And many THANKS to everyone who has dedicated his/her time and help over the years to make this park a reality for all!
Thank you and enjoy!!!!
PS Here is the Montgomery Department of Parks' staff recommendation that was approved today: http://www.montgomeryplanningboard.org/agenda/2012/documents/20120927_Ca...
It my earnest hope that our leaders in Montgomery County will be able to buy back MCAD from the Montgomery College Foundation and save it as a much needed neighborhood park for the benefit of scores of present and future residents.
MCAD is on the market for $2M for single family home development: http://www.redfin.com/MD/Silver-Spring/10500-Georgia-Ave-20902/home/4025...
Does anyone have $2M for a neighborhood park? If so, please help our communities.
A New Park on Georgia Avenue in the Future?
School of Art and Design at Montgomery College building to be considered for Legacy Open Space.
By Taylor Kate Brown | Email the author | 6:00am
A long-abandoned building on Georgia Avenue that held the School of Art and Design for Montgomery College (MCAD) will be reconsidered for the Parks system Legacy Open Space program this summer.
Montgomery College Foundation, which owns the building and the land at 10500 Georgia Avenue, is looking to sell. MCAD has been empty since 2007 and an earlier attempt to develop the property into a townhouses lost in a court challenge from neighborhood residents.
Green Space on Georgia, a civic group representing neighborhoods around the property has been working to keep the site an open, green space.
Legacy Open Space (LOS) is an alternate process through which land becomes part of the Parks system.
"The program is designed to keep the "best of" Montgomery County," said Brenda Sandberg, project manager for Legacy Open Space, whether the "best of" are streams, urban open spaces, or parks. "Think really long term - 50 to 100 years."
The planning board rejected the site's inclusion in LOS in 2007, against the recommendation of the Parks' staff, citing the potential recreational component of the site didn't fit the legacy program.
Now a similar proposal will be coming in front of almost completely new planning board, and right in the middle of the Parks 2030 visioning process.
An conditional April 21st date for the hearing has been moved back to summer because of staff time spent on budget issues.
If the planning board approves the proposal, the Parks department and Montgomery College Foundation would have to settle a price - especially tricky in its urban downcounty location.
The MCAD building has been vacant for over 3 years now and the target of vandalism. There was a recent police altercation with a minor on the MCAD property. We hope our elected officials can save MCAD as a much needed neighborhood park soon. So far, all efforts have been stalled, and we have heard nothing recently from Montgomery College. It is our hope to work with the County and the College to come to a solution sooner rather than later. We hope that the College will publicly support turning MCAD into parkland and help us in finding funding to buy the land back from them.
Montgomery County police officer indicted on second-degree assault charge
Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2010
Montgomery County police officer indicted on second-degree assault charge
Second investigation to be made into same officer for unrelated incidents
by Jeremy Arias | Staff Writer
A Montgomery County police officer was indicted by the county State's Attorney's Office on Friday for allegedly assaulting a 16-year-old Silver Spring boy with his baton after a brief foot chase in March.
At approximately 4:50 p.m. March 3, Officer George Saoutis and several other Fourth District officers responded to a building at Evans Drive and Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring for reports of a graffiti-related vandalism in progress, according to county police spokeswoman Lucille Baur. The officers arrived to find seven to 10 suspects fleeing the scene, and Saoutis was one of at least two officers who gave chase, Baur said.
After repeated calls to stop were ignored by the youth, Saoutis apprehended the youth and charged him with vandalism, Baur said, adding that the boy — who is not being identified because he is a juvenile — was transported to a local hospital for a one-inch laceration to the top-back of his head.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Wheaton residents face roadblock in plan for new park
County budget deals another blow to potential recreational area
by Amber Parcher | Staff Writer
The residents of three Wheaton neighborhoods who are fervently trying to find money to turn a vacant public art school into a park seem to have run into a dead end.
That's the dire news Councilwoman Valerie Ervin (D-Dist. 4) of Silver Spring passed onto residents of Carroll Knolls, Plyers Mill and McKenney Hills in a meeting about the property last week.
"We've been down every road we can take, and we have been stopped at every single corner," she said. "We have about run out of options here."
The Maryland College of Art and Design building, which is owned by the nonprofit Montgomery College Foundation, has sat vacant for almost three years while a proposal for a townhouse development idled in the courts. The school has become an eyesore and encourages illicit late-night activity, say neighbors, who fought the townhouse project and who want the county to purchase the land for a soccer field or park.
Ervin said last week it's a race against time to find a solution that leads to a park before the foundation, which supports taxpayer-funded Montgomery College, strikes a more lucrative deal that involves much more concrete.
After being shot down several times by the county's parks department for funds, Ervin said that their best hope is to organize a united front with Wheaton's state delegation to request funds from a similar parks fund run by the state. But that, too, is a long shot — if the area didn't meet the county's requirements for an open space fund, it's likely it won't meet the state's either. And that's assuming there's even money left in that pot, she said.
But Ervin also said: "I think it's the strongest option we might have."
Contact: Elizabeth Chaisson FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
GREENWHEATON INSTALLS A DEMONSTRATION GARDEN IN DOWNTOWN WHEATON
On Sunday, May 2, 2010, From 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., Volunteers Will Install a Conservation Landscape on the Wheaton Green Triangle Across From 2424 Reedie Drive
Wheaton, MD April 27, 2010 – On Sunday, May 2, 2010, GreenWheaton, an affiliate of the Mid-County Regional Services Center, will be installing a conservation landscape opposite the Center’s offices at 2424 Reedie Drive. The conservation landscape will be installed in a 500 square foot section located in the southwest corner of the Wheaton Green Triangle. Interested Montgomery County residents are welcome to attend and learn about the benefits of removing turf and creating conservation landscapes in our environment, which soak up more rain water than typical lawns or gardens.
The Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection RainScapes Program will provide the soil amendments and plants native to the Maryland area for this project. These native plants will help absorb rainfall that would otherwise be diverted to nearby storm drains. Capturing rainfall that would otherwise become polluted runoff has a number of long-term environmental benefits; principally, replenishing groundwater and recharging streams and preventing stormwater pollution from entering our waterways. To learn more about how to install a conservation landscape or a rain garden in your yard or neighborhood, please visit Montgomery County’s RainScapes Program on-line at: http://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/dectmpl.asp?url=/content/dep/water/rai...
Upcoming Wheaton Events that will provide the public an opportunity to view the installed conservation landscape include:
- 15th Annual Taste of Wheaton on Sunday May 16th from 11am-5pm
- Wheaton Flea Market every Sunday from 9am-3pm all year
My name is Beverly Sobel, president of GreenSpaceOnGeorgia.org. GreenSpaceOnGeorgia.org is a
civic group representing over several hundred Wheaton, MD residents that live near the former School of
Art and Design at Montgomery College (MCAD) property. The MCAD property is located at 10500
Georgia Ave., Wheaton, MD. These residents overwhelming support the creation of much needed
parkland at MCAD.
The State bond funding requested today will be used for the demolition and removal of the roughly 14,000
sq. ft. MCAD building which has been vacant for over 2.5 years in our communities. Tearing down the
building is the first step to parkland creation. The building has been heavily vandalized and encourages
criminal behavior. Over the past 2.5 years, the windows of the back side of the building were broken to
the point that they were recently replaced in their entirety with plywood. Now, this recently painted
plywood has become a canvass for graffiti. Please see the attached photos. Prior to the new plywood,
broken windows were replaced with pieces of plywood. For example, please look at Photo 5, the front
entrance of the building. All of these photos were taken a week ago. The community is concerned about
the apparent tagging of the MCAD building by possibly gangs as well as the amount of alcohol consumed
on the property as evidenced by the broken beer bottles on the pavement and the growing number of
bottles collecting on the top of the MCAD building’s roof.
We are grateful for the opportunity today to request state funding to help demolish and remove this
heavily vandalized, long vacant building in our communities. Future parkland at MCAD will provide safe,
nearby access to public recreational space for three Wheaton communities (Carroll Knolls, McKenney
Hills, and Plyers Mill Crossing). The M-NCPPC Parks Department as well as scores of residents, civic
Montgomery County Council
March 12, 2010
The Honorable Senator Richard S. Madaleno, Jr.
James Senate Office Building
Annapolis, MD 21401
I am writing to support the bond bill funding for design, construction, repair, and renovation of the Montgomery College Art and Design site (House Bill 651).
I have been working with representatives from the McKenney Hills, Carroll Knolls, and Plyers Mill communities regarding the future use of the Maryland College of Art and Design (MCAD) property. Representatives from these communities have stated that they would like this site turned into a park for recreational use. As you may know, the MCAD site is one of the few remaining green spaces in the Sligo Creek watershed. In addition, the concept plan for the Georgia Avenue corridor promotes increased recreational and local park opportunities as well as the development of a green boulevard along Georgia Avenue.
I wrote a letter to the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission’s Director of Parks supporting a plan to turn the MCAD property into a park using Legacy Open Space (LOS) funding in August 2008. The Montgomery County Planning Board did not designate the site as part of the County’s LOS program, citing limited funding for the program and the site’s failure to meet LOS criteria. In October 2009, I asked the Planning Board to reconsider its decision on the LOS designation, but it has declined to do so.
I know that developing the MCAD property into a park could provide valuable recreation and open space for the community. While I support this proposal, without an additional funding source, the current budget crisis has depleted the necessary resources to make any changes to the site a reality in the near-term.