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Montgomery County Council committee highlights for Thursday, March 2

For Immediate Release: Thursday, March 2, 2017

Montgomery Council committee to

discuss park issues for the

proposed Bethesda Downtown Plan

On Thursday, March 2: Specific Bethesda properties also

to be addressed; improving Ride On bus information


ROCKVILLE, Md., March 1, 2017—The Montgomery County Council’s Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) Committee at 2 p.m. on Thursday, March 2, will continue its discussions on the proposed Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan. Thursday’s worksession will focus on the plan’s recommendations related to parks (including financing) and the beginning of reviews of specific properties covered in the proposal.

The PHED Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Nancy Floreen and includes Councilmembers George Leventhal and Hans Riemer, will meet in the Third Floor Hearing Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. The meeting will be will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM), which can be viewed on Cable Channels 996 (high definition) and 6 (standard definition) on Comcast; Channels 1056 (HD) and 6 (SD) on RCN; and Channel 30 on Verizon. The sessions also will be available live via streaming through the Council web site at .

The identification of new parks and open spaces is one of the four overarching goals of the Bethesda Sector Plan. Among the issues the PHED Committee is likely to address are:

  • The right locations for potential future parks.
  • How can acquisitions and development be funded.
  • The viability of converting existing public surface parking lots to parks.
  • The priorities for acquisition.

At 9:30 a.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Roger Berliner and includes Councilmembers Nancy Floreen and Tom Hucker, will discuss an amendment to the Fiscal Years 2017-22 Capital Improvements Program to replace Ride On's computer-aided dispatch/automatic vehicle locator (CAD/ADV) system.

The County Executive Ike Leggett is recommending $12.1 million to be budgeted in FY18 to replace the system used to monitor whether the buses are on schedule and on route, and to provide real-time schedule to riders, among other purposes. Both the current hardware and software are well out of date, with the result that now only a fraction of the information reported by the CAD/AVL system is correct or timely. Furthermore, a Council staff report says much of the information is no longer supportable. The new system would be cellular-based, rather than radio-based.

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Release ID: 17-061
Media Contact: Neil Greenberger 240-777-7939