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Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan

sandy spring logonew The approved Planning Board Draft of the Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan was transmitted to the County Executive and County Council on October 31st.

Plan Highlights

In a previous plan, the 1998 Sandy Spring/Ashton Master Plan, the "rural village" character in Sandy Spring was recognized. The village center is of great value to the community. The 1998 Plan proposed the creation of a village center concept for Sandy Spring "that will help ensure that the village center serves its role as a focal point of community life." The concept developed in 1998 for the Sandy Spring village center included the following elements: development of a new fire station as a community focal point, realignment of Brooke Road to improve access, a village green concept, and resolution of parking issues.

The Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan, launched in the fall of 2013, provides an opportunity to further preserve the rich cultural history of the area, identify connections and mobility gaps, and design civic spaces and a village center for the community to gather. Scope of Work

This Plan follows the guidance in the 1998 Master Plan and determine how to best connect the new fire station into a village center concept, design a village green, and determine the feasibility of realigning Brooke Road using the following three goals:

  • Preserve- the rich cultural history of the area
  • Design- a civic space and village center
  • Connect- the community to the village center and examine right-of-way issues

The Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan also examines land use and potential zoning changes. The Plan did not undergo a large scale transportation modeling process, but it examines traffic studies along MD 108 and intersection data.

Montgomery Plans segment

The Sandy Spring Rural Village Plan held their Public Hearing on Sept. 4. Check out this video airing in the current edition of Montgomery Plans featuring planners Kristin O’Connor and Roberto Duke about the progress of the plan:

Background

Sandy Spring map

The Sandy Spring/Ashton Master Plan (1998) proposes creation of a village center concept for Sandy Spring "that will help ensure that the village center serves its role as a focal point of community life." The Plan recommended that the concept focus on three elements:

  • design and construction of a new fire station that would serve as a community focal point;
  • realignment of Brooke Road to improve both pedestrian and vehicular circulation in the village center; and
  • the creation of a village green.

The fire station has been built, but it is away from the intersection of Brooke Road and MD 108. The other elements of the concept remain incomplete.

In May 2010, two groups (one of residents and one representing the business community) met with planning staff, the County Executive, and Main Street, to define their visions for how Sandy Spring can retain its rural character over the next twenty years. The groups defined downtown Sandy Spring as Route 108 from Bentley Road (including the museum) to Norwood Road. The consensus was made about how this historic community can retain its small-town charm while accommodating growth. Below are the items discussed in the draft document "A Vision for Sandy Spring, DRAFT, June 2010" and they include:

  • rural character
  • buildings
  • relationship between buildings and streets
  • public spaces
  • transportation
  • retail, services, and restaurants
  • housing

Project schedule

Planning Board Public Hearing: September 4, 2014
Planning Board Worksession No 1: October 2, 2014
Planning Board Worksession No 2: October 23, 2014
Transmit to County Executive and
County Council: October 2014
County Council Public Hearing: January 2015
County Council Worksessions: January/February/March 2015
Plan Adoption: April 2015

Upcoming

  • new County Council Public Hearing: January 2015 (TBD)

Past Meetings

  • October 23, 2014: Planning Board Worksession No. 2 and final worksession. The Planning Board approved to transmit the Planning Board Draft to the County Council and County Executive.
  • October 2, 2014: Planning Board Worksession No. 1; focused on the general concepts of the Plan including the vision and history; land use, density and height; transportation capacity; and implementation strategies to create a vibrant Village.(See memo)
  • September 4, 2014: Planning Board Public Hearing (written testimony) (Public Hearing Draft)
  • July 17, 2014: The Planning Board approved the Staff Draft as the Planning Board Public Hearing Draft and scheduled the Public Hearing for September 4th, 2014.
  • July 17, 2014: Sandy Spring Rural Village Staff Draft Presentation, Montgomery County Planning Department Headquarters, 8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, MD. See Press Release See Presentation See Video
  • May 14, 2014: Community meeting discussed the final recommendations on Wednesday, May 14, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Sandy Spring Friends School, Yarnall Hall Library, 16923 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring. See Press Release See Presentation
  • April 3, 2014: Staff briefed the Planning Board on the preliminary recommendations. See memo See Presentation See Video
  • March 19, 2014: Staff discussed the preliminary recommendations held at the Sandy Spring Friends Meeting House at 17715 Meeting House Road, Sandy Spring, MD from 7 PM to 9 PM. See: slide presentation
  • February 3, 4, 5, and 6, 2014: Four-Day Design Workshop, the Library of the Sandy Spring Museum, 17901 Bentley Road, Sandy Spring. The Montgomery County Planning Department hosted a design workshop to capture ideas for transforming the heart of Sandy Spring. Over 130 residents and business owners attended.
  • Monday, February 3, 2014
    7 – 9 pm: Presentation, Charrette Overview, and Visioning Session (Dr. Bird Room)
    See: slide presentation - photo album

    Tuesday, February 4, 2014
    10:00 am – Noon: Visioning Exercise (Library)
    1-5 pm: Visioning Session Continued; Land Use and Zoning Workshop (Dr. Bird Room)
    See: photo album (days 2 and 3)

    Wednesday, February 5, 2014
    10 am to Noon: Land Use and Zoning (Library)
    1-5 pm: Roadway Design, Connections and Open Space (Library)
    See: photo album (days 2 and 3)

    Thursday, February 6, 2014
    10 am - Noon: Roadway Design, Connections, and Open Space (Library)
    1-5 pm: Refine Plan Recommendations (Library)
    7-9 pm: Charrette Final Presentation and Workshop Conclusion
    See: slide presentation

  • December 12, 2013: The Scope of Work was approved by the Planning Board on Thursday, December 12, 2013. The Sandy Spring Rural Village boundary area is part of a larger Rural Village Overlay Zone area that also covers the Ashton Village Center and it is generally defined as follows: by the northern boundary of the Sandy Spring Volunteer Fire Department site, on the south by MD 108, Brook Road on the west, and Sandy Spring Museum on the east.
  • May 2010: Visioning exercise with Planning Staff, County Executive staff, Main Street, residents and business owners
  • October 23, 2013: The Montgomery County Planning Department held its first community meeting for the Sandy Spring Village Center Minor Master Plan Amendment. Thirty-one residents, business owners, and civic association members came to the Oak Ballroom at the Sandy Spring Volunteer Fire Department site to share their thoughts and comments with the Planning Department team.

Sandy Spring Museum Exhibt

Check out the online versionof the exhibit featured at the Sandy Spring Museum in March and April 2014..

Press

M-NCPPC staff contacts

Kristin O'Connor, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Lead Planner
301-495-2172
Kristin.Oconnor@montgomeryplanning.org

Roberto Duke, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Urban Designer
301-495-2168
Roberto.Duke@montgomeryplanning.org

Fred Boyd, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Land Use, 301-495-4654
Katherine Nelson, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Environmental Planning, 301-495-4622
Rachel Newhouse, Montgomery County Department of Parks, Park Planning, 301 650 - 4368
Sandra Youla, Historic Preservation, Preservation Planning, 301-563-3419
Michael Garcia, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Transportation Planning, 301-495-4549
Leslie Saville, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Rustic Roads, 301-495-2194
Jonathan Casey, Area 3: Up-County & Rural Planning, Zoning and Land Use, 301-495-2162

Date of last update: November 5, 2014