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Montgomery County's rural areas encompass the 93,000 acre Agricultural Reserve along with the larger rural communities of Damascus and Poolesville; small crossroad communities such as Beallsville, Sunshine and Dickerson; and areas with mixed open land and housing. The forward-thinking 1964 General Plan focused growth in defined corridors emanating from the population centers in and around the Capital Beltway. Between those corridors, the General Plan called for wedges of low-density residential uses, open space and protected farmland.

The County's Agricultural Services Division was created to support and promote the viability of the agricultural industry in Montgomery County. Agricultural activities occupy about one-third of Montgomery County's land area and the County's diverse agricultural industry - 540 farms and 350 horticultural enterprises - produces more than $287 million in economic contribution and employs more than 10,000 residents.

We create great communities by developing master plans, reviewing applications for development and analyzing various types of information to help public officials plan for Montgomery County's future. Learn more.

The Planning Board meets weekly to review development applications and other projects, and our planners are actively engaged in the community. Learn what planning initiatives are taking place in Area 3: Up-County, Rural Area.

What's new

  • New! View the Rustic Roads Biennial Report [PDF] (June 2015).
  • The approved and adopted Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan document is available and can be found here.
  • The Germantown/Boyds MARC Plan will be kicking off this fall. Please email Roberto Duke with any questions.
  • The Council completed the 10 Mile Creek area of Clarksburg to determine the balance of future development with environmental and conservation goals.
  • The 2014-2015 Winter Speaker Series held the following session on February 11, 2015, “Creating and Sustaining the County’s Agricultural Reserve.” This session traces the 30-year effort to protect the rural landscape and the working farms of upper Montgomery County. It discusses the technical planning, legal and political challenges that were overcome to establish the Agricultural Reserve in 1980 and sustain a working landscape against continuing efforts to compromise its integrity. Link to original video

  • Public art, which helps build community, foster economic development and create a sense of place. View our new Public Art Guidelines.
  • The latest episode of Montgomery Plans spotlights our Zoning Code Rewrite, greening the down-county with free trees, a tour of Germantown Town Center three years after the master plan took effect and the latest big decisions of the Planning Board

Upcoming events

 

  • Montgomery County Agricultural Fair: http://mcagfair.com/ - August 14-22, 2015

  • Agricultural Preservation Advisory Board (APAB) oversees the County's Public Policy and programs that protect farmland for future generation and makes recommendations to State and County officials regarding farmland preservation issues. This Board normally meets on the second Tuesday of each monthat the Upcounty Regional Service Center, Germantown, Maryland. Meetings start at 730 pm and are open to the public. Please contact Jonathan Casey for more details.

  • Agricultural Advisory committee (AAC) Provides liaison between the County Government and the agricultural sector and to coordinate local government services in rural areas and to provide input and recommendation on issues impacting the rural and agricultural areas.This committee normally meets on the third Tuesday of each month at the Upcounty Regional Service Center, Germantown, Maryland. Meetings start at 7:00 pm and are open to the public. Please contact Josh Penn for more details.

  • Rustic Roads Advisory Committee (RRAC) Primary Focus Rustic Roads: Meets 4th Tuesday each month. Please contact Leslie Saville for more details. Rustic and Exceptional rustic roads are preserved under the Rustic Roads Program, which provides a system for evaluating, protecting, and enhancing these scenic roadways. The program includes nearly 100 roads. The Rustic Roads webpage outlines the Rustic Roads Advisory Committee (RRAC) meetings for the rest of the year.

Active community plans

Ongoing projects

M-NCPPC Staff Contact

Area 3 Planner to Call Telephone E-mail
Area 3 Chief Kip Reynolds (301) 495-4575 kipling.reynolds@montgomeryplanning.org
Administrative Aid Rebecca Boone (301) 495-4643 rebecca.boone@montgomeryplanning.org
Master Plan Area Planner to Call Telephone E-mail
Supervisor Fred Boyd (301) 495-4654 fred.boyd@montgomeryplanning.org
MARC Stations Roberto Duke (301) 495-2168 roberto.duke@montgomeryplanning.org
Sandy Spring Rural Village Kristin O’Connor (301) 495-2172 kristin.oconnor@montgomeryplanning.org
Agricultural Reserve Josh Penn (301) 495-4546 joshua.penn@montgomeryplanning.org
Boyds Roberto Duke
(301) 495-2168
roberto.duke@montgomeryplanning.org
Leslie Saville (301) 495-2194 leslie.saville@montgomeryplanning.org
Clarksburg Ryan Sigworth (301) 495-2112 ryan.sigworth@montgomeryplanning.org
Cloverly Kristin O’Connor (301) 495-2172 kristin.oconnor@montgomeryplanning.org
Damascus Mary Beth O’Quinn (301) 495-1322 marybeth.oquinn@montgomeryplanning.org
Fairland/Burtonsville Kristin O’Connor (301) 495-2172 kristin.oconnor@montgomeryplanning.org
Germantown Leslie Saville (301) 495-2194 leslie.saville@montgomeryplanning.org
Olney Roberto Duke (301) 495-2168 roberto.duke@montgomeryplanning.org
Potomac Subregion Fred Boyd (301) 495-4654 fred.boyd@montgomeryplanning.org
Sandy Spring Kristin O’Connor (301) 495-2172 kristin.oconnor@montgomeryplanning.org
Upper Rock Creek Roberto Duke (301) 495-4654 roberto.duke@montgomeryplanning.org
Potomac
Forest Conservation
Water and Sewer
Patux. River PMP
Katherine Nelson (301) 495-4622 katherine.nelson@montgomeryplanning.org
Forest Conservation Josh Penn (301) 495-4546 joshua.penn@montgomeryplanning.org
Recreational Guidelines/
Urban Design
Marybeth O’Quinn (301) 495-1322 marybeth.oquinn@montgomeryplanning.org
Rustic Roads Leslie Saville (301) 495-2194 leslie.saville@montgomeryplanning.org
Zoning Amendments/
Conditional Uses
Elsabett Tesfaye (301) 495-1301 elsabett.tesfaye@montgomeryplanning.org
Regulatory Review Planner to Call Telephone E-mail
Supervisor Rich Weaver (301) 495-4544 richard.weaver@montgomeryplanning.org
Subdivision Review Ben Berbert (301) 495-4644 benjamin.berbert@montgomeryplanning.org
Subdivision Review Jonathan Casey (301) 495-2162 jonathan.casey@montgomeryplanning.org
Subdivision Review Ryan Sigworth (301) 495-2112 ryan.sigworth@montgomeryplanning.org
Site Plan Review, 
Public Arts Panel Coordinator
Molline Jackson (301) 495-4573 molline.jackson@montgomeryplanning.org
Site Plan Review Sandra Pereira (301) 495-2186 sandra.pereira@montgomeryplanning.org
Forest Conservation Ordinance- NRIs, Exemptions Mary Jo Kishter (301) 495-4701 maryjo.kishter@montgomeryplanning.org
Transportation Planning Michael Garcia (301) 495-4549 Michael.Garcia@montgomeryplanning.org

*Some jurisdictions within Montgomery County—such as the cities of Rockville and Gaithersburg and some smaller taxing districts such as Poolesville—have independent planning and zoning authority over land within their boundaries. Contact those jurisdictions directly for information about properties within their borders.

Date of last update: August 10, 2015