Higher Density Application on Washington Grove Parcel DeniedMPI was asked to assist Washington Grove in its efforts to lower the proposed density on a nearby parcel of land. MPI President Lorraine Pearsall and others submitted testimony and the application was denied by the Planning Board on Sept. 13, 2012. This is a great step in preserving the ambiance of the National Register -listed Town of Washington Grove.
Gaithersburg Rezoning and Development Plan Confirmed Illegal and DefunctDr. Robert Wilson applied for demolition of 13 DeSellum Avenue in July of 2012. The owner of a neighboring property received the only notice on Monday July 16 informing her that the building would be demolished on Wednesday July 18. She immediately notified MPI.
MPI and attorney Michele Rosenfeld reacted immediately and worked to persuade the city to follow their process in evaluating historic resources for demolition. It eventually agreed to do so.
MPI has found that the City condemned the building after Dr. Wilson hired a structural engineer to report on the building condition. The structural report found it to be an old building needing maintenance and a lot of work to pass a rental inspection or to be suitable for inhabitation.
Accordingly, the Gaithersburg HDC will meet on Thursday Sept. 6 to evaluate the building and determine if it should have a public hearing to determine significance.
It is not a public hearing, but the public is allowed to comment. MPI will comment that Dr. Wilson has not maintained this property yet is requesting demolition saying it is unfit for habitation, a condition that could have been remedied.
If the HDC finds the structure eligible, it will go to an HDC public hearing for designation, probably in October. If found eligible and recommended for designation, it will go to the Mayor and Council for a public hearing. The Mayor and Council is the body that has the authority to rezone property, and historic designation is rezoning according to Maryland Code 66 B.
Read more on the background of this issue.
Metropolitan Branch TrailA rumor has been spreading that Montgomery Preservation Inc. has denied access to the Metropolitan Branch Trail through our property, the Historic Silver Spring B&O Station at 8100 Georgia Avenue. Fortunately, these rumors are not true. We were told that the project was eliminated from the proposed CIP (Capital Improvements) temporarily for fiscal reasons. There are issues to be worked out and some of them are very expensive – tunnels and bridges. Let us set the record straight.