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27Dec 17

Historic Tax Credit

Thanks to calls and emails from concerned citizens like you, the important federal historic tax credit was retained in the recent tax bill. It had been dropped from the House tax bill but preserved in the Senate version. Although this tax credit only applies to restoration/rehabilitation of commercial properties, it has been crucial to Montgomery County projects, including the National Park Seminary, and is important to historic preservation throughout Maryland. In fact, this credit returns $1.20 to federal coffers for each $1 it gives out.

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27Dec 17

New Recognitions in Montgomery County

Recent National Register listings are New Mark Commons development in Rockville and the Mihran Mesrobian House in the Town of Chevy Chase. Recent Modernist historic district is the Americana Centre in City of Rockville.

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27Dec 17

Sad News

After 28 years as Architectural Historian at M-NCPPC, Clare Lise Kelly is retiring. Property owners, researchers, planners, Modernists, and others will use her thorough, insightful, and award-winning work products for decades to come. Thank you, Clare, for leading so many of us into the Montgomery Modern era !

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30Nov 17
Montgomery County Cemetery Inventory Revisited off to a Great Start!

Montgomery County Cemetery Inventory Revisited off to a Great Start!

Under the enthusiastic and steady hand of project coordinator Glenn Wallace, this initiative is right on schedule.  By the February 9, 2018 effective date of Bill 24-17 – Burial Sites, passed by a unanimous County Council, cemetery advocates were in the field revisiting the initial Montgomery County Cemetery Inventory (MCCI) conducted 2004-2009.

Accomplishments thus far include; converting the 2009 list of known cemeteries to Excel, revising the survey form, adding newly discovered cemeteries, providing FindaGrave links and creating new entries, coordinating with Montgomery Planning GIS personnel, conducting research on sites identified as Lost or Relocated, and scanning paper files on every known cemetery.

Three training sessions were conducted (in Rockville, Silver Spring, and Sugarland) after which volunteer leaders, assistants, and surveyors were given detailed survey packets and assigned to Zones and specific burial sites around the county.  The February 10 session focused on African American cemeteries, featured a talk on Burial Societies, and resulted in a list of more than 80 African American sites.  By mid-February, a dozen forms were completed, and more than 50 volunteers were out conducting surveys and photographing cemeteries. Another training session is scheduled for March 10, 11 am–1 pm at Norbeck-Muncaster Recreation Center at 4101 Muncaster Mill Rd, Rockville.  Those interested in attending should contact mococems@gmail.com.

Visit the Historic Cemeteries webpage to find out more about this project.  More information will be added to this website as the project progresses.

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29Nov 17
Update on the future of the former Silver Spring Library

Update on the future of the former Silver Spring Library

RFPs submitted months ago for the 2.35 acre parcel on Colesville Road, home since 1957 to the Silver Spring Public Library, have been narrowed by County government to two.  Local civic associations teamed up with the Silver Spring Historical Society to convince County government to preserve the library site for parkland and an adaptive reuse of the handsome building that will continue to benefit the community.  This serviceable building is well situated on the total parcel for green space as well as newer uses.  

Local civic associations, Silver Spring Historical Society, and individuals submitted comments on the final two proposals.  MPI’s comments in favor of one of these proposals can be viewed here.

Designed by Rhees Burket, a noted architect with a lifetime of civic and professional leadership, the library is an icon of Montgomery Modern architecture.  The Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired flagship structure came early in the new County library system, when other towns operated facilities out of smaller makeshift buildings.  The Silver Spring Library was a harbinger of mid-century design and of local public services yet to come.  Its open floor plan fills with light, highlighting natural materials of brick and native quarried stone and surrounding hilly landscape, and is considered one of Burket’s best works.

For the time being, you can visit Friends of the Wheaton Library’s Used Book Store at this library.

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