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For Immediate Release: Saturday, December 10, 2016

For Immediate Release:  December 10, 2016

County Executive Isiah Leggett today joined County Councilmembers Nancy Floreen, Tom Hucker and George Leventhal; Department of General Services Director David Dise; Health and Human Services Director Uma Ahluwalia and non-profit partners to cut the ribbon on the new Progress Place in downtown Silver Spring.  The 39,000 square-foot facility is the result of a public-private partnership with Bethesda-based Washington Property Company. 

“Progress Place is a shining example of a successful partnership—government, private development and non-profit partners—working together to serve some of Silver Spring’s most vulnerable residents,” said County Executive Isiah Leggett.  It is emblematic of a community that is bustling but that works hard to ensure that those less fortunate are not left behind.”

The building that housed Progress Place was originally a bakery, adjacent to the CSX railroad track.  It was renovated in 1992 and has been used since to provide services. The Department of General Services (DGS) sought proposals from developers interested in redeveloping the currently County-owned property in exchange for relocating programs and services to a new building at no cost to the County.  Washington Property Company was selected as the development partner for the design and construction of the new Progress Place building on County-owned land directly behind Fire Station #1.  The existing site will be redeveloped by Washington Property Company with high-rise residential development.  The existing building is located in the “Ripley District” which has been targeted for major new commercial and residential projects, supporting the recommendations of the Silver Spring Central Business District Sector Plan.

“This project is a terrific example of the way the public and private sectors can work together to make our communities even better,” said Floreen.  “I am glad we were able to so fully meet the scale of needs with this project.”

The Progress Place facility houses programs operated by non-profits Interfaith Works (formerly the Community Vision program and now known as the Interfaith Works Empowerment Center), Mobile Medical Care and Shepherd’s Table that serve low-income and homeless individuals in the Silver Spring area.

Interfaith Work’s Empowerment Center provides services such as access to showers and laundry; one-on-one case management; referrals for behavioral health, benefits, shelter/housing and other needs.  In extreme weather situations, Progress Place provides emergency overnight shelter space for men and women.  Th agency will also manage the new individual residential units, which will provide men and women who previously have experienced homelessness with safe, permanent housing with wrap-around services including those offered on-site at Progress Place.

Mobile Medical Care currently provides an on-site medical clinic providing primary care and nurse case management services.

Shepherd’s Table provides daily meals, clothing, information and referral, a mailing address, access to vision care, prescription assistance and transportation assistance.  In the new facility, food service will expand significantly from serving nine weekly meals to serving nineteen weekly meals.  This will add lunch and breakfast during the week and brunches on weekend days. 

"I am so thankful for the opening of Progress Place's new home in Silver Spring,” said Hucker.   “Programs such as Interfaith Works and Shepherd's Table provide essential support for women and men during difficult times in their lives. Our community could not be more proud of the critical work these providers do." 

“The County Council provided a lot of input into the design of the new Progress Place to ensure the dining and sleeping facilities are separated, hygienic and comfortable. We also worked hard to make sure the maximum feasible number of Personal Living Quarters were included in the building's design,” said Leventhal, chair of the Council’s Health and Human Services Committee.

“The new Progress Place exemplifies Montgomery County's commitment to helping our residents in their time of crisis and helping them get their lives back in order.”

“This project is the most recent example of the effective leveraging of publicly owned assets to deliver new facilities, improve public services, and contribute to economic development in the county,” said Dise.   “It is an honor for DGS to play a key role in delivering the new Progress Place to serve fellow residents in need of support and assistance.”

Services at the new site will begin on December 16 and residents will begin moving into the individual units the first week in January.

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Release ID: 16-439
Media Contact: Mary Anderson 240-777-6534, Cell 301-529-7669