(BETHESDA REAL ESTATE) The Montgomery County Planning Board denied a request this week that would have turned a proposed mixed use retail space into an open green space. The proposal is at the corner of Woodmont and Bethesda Avenue where there is currently a much used parking lot. Apparently three local groups submitted an application to keep this site in the Legacy Open Space program but the request was turned down since there is adequate green space close enough for trail users and downtown visitors to access.
That's a tough call. Open space downtown keeps a flavor that encourages a neighborly gathering place but the parking lot that currently occupies the space is much needed. Selfishly I use that lot all the time since I work right at that corner! What is proposed is a 540,000 square foot retail development with hotels and condos. Add to this the proposed two apartment buildings across the street and that entire corner of Bethesda will be transformed. I'm guessing there will never be enough parking for all of that development!
Preliminary and project plans for this will go before the Planning Board on November 8.