Annual Monitoring Report for Bethesda Downtown Plan Presented to the Planning Board

The Montgomery County Planning Department briefed the Montgomery County Planning Board on the update to the implementation of the 2017 Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan at their meeting on July 28, 2022. The 2022 Annual Monitoring Report details the plan’s progress between May 2021 and May 2022 on school capacity, new parks and open spaces and transportation adequacy. The report also presents information on recent development activity in downtown Bethesda and the status of the Bethesda Overlay Zone (BOZ).

View the 2022 Bethesda Monitoring Report.

This annual monitoring report is presented to the Planning Board in the spring/summer of each year and transmitted to the Montgomery County Council for review.

Highlights from the report

  • Construction: The following projects are currently under construction: 7000 Wisconsin Avenue, Metro Tower, 8015 Old Georgetown Road, 7607 Old Georgetown Road, the Claiborne, and Auburn Avenue.
  • Schools: In the current academic year, schools in the Bethesda-Chevy Chase cluster are experiencing the following capacity utilization rates: 88% at the elementary school, 78.3% at the middle school and 96.7% at the high school.
  • Parks and Open Space: Since 2017, sixteen development sites have been approved with Park Impact Payments (PIPs) requirements totaling over $19 million. So far, eight PIPs have been submitted totaling $14,244,808, and the remaining approved PIPs are expected to be paid during the next few years.
  • Transportation: The County Executive and Montgomery County Department of Transportation are no longer pursuing the Bethesda Unified Mobility Program (BUMP) and are exploring alternative funding mechanisms for local infrastructure.
  • Implementation Committee: The Planning Board reappointed three members to additional terms and appointed two new members to the Bethesda Downtown Plan Implementation Advisory Committee (IAC).
  • Design: The Design Advisory Panel has reviewed four new projects since April 2021: 4901 Battery Lane, 8001 Wisconsin Avenue, 4725 Cheltenham Drive, and 7126 Wisconsin Avenue.

Bethesda Overlay Zone (BOZ) Update

The Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan recommended the creation of the Bethesda Overlay Zone. The Montgomery County Council, through Zoning Text Amendment 16-20, Ordinance No. 18-28, adopted the Bethesda Overlay Zone in July 2017 to implement the recommendations of the Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan as it relates to density, building heights, affordable housing goals, parks and open space and design.

About the Bethesda Downtown Plan

The 2017 Approved and Adopted Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan is being implemented through focused coordination between public and private interests. The plan’s vision stems from the goals and recommendations within this Sector Plan to enhance Downtown Bethesda over the next 20 years. The aim of the Plan is to achieve a truly sustainable downtown by focusing on components that will bolster the elements in most need of enhancement including increased parks and open space, affordable housing, environmental innovation, economic competitiveness and design excellence. The Plan’s vision will be implemented through various actions, including zoning, a park impact payment, and annual monitoring and reporting.

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17th Annual Kensington Day of the Book Festival

Now in its 17th year, the Kensington Day of the Book Festival is a family-friendly street festival featuring 150+ renowned authors, poets, and literary organizations. Enjoy live music on five stages, special guest speakers, military veteran writers and comedians, poetry readings, cookbook demos, children's program, and much more.

Admission is free, and attendees will also be able to explore a marketplace of books and food offerings from local vendors.

Not your average book festival! This festival offers something for everyone!

17th Annual Kensington Day of the Book Festival

Sunday, April 21, 2024, 11am-4pm (held rain or shine!)

Howard Avenue, Kensington, MD 20895

Instagram: @kensingtonbookfestival

Contact: Elisenda Sola-Sole, Festival Director

[email protected]

301-949-9416 (text preferred)

FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival

Get ready to experience the vibrant colors, tantalizing flavors, and infectious rhythms of the Caribbean at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival! Hosted by RHU LLC, this exciting festival is set to take place on May 18, 2024, at the picturesque 16700 Barnesville Rd in Boyds, MD.

Step into a world where the Caribbean spirit comes alive! From 12:00 PM onwards, immerse yourself in a sensory journey that celebrates the unique culture, cuisine, and music of the Caribbean. Whether you're an African American, a Reggae or Soca music enthusiast, a wine lover, or part of the vibrant Caribbean diaspora, this festival promises to delight and captivate you in every way.

Let the enticing aromas of mouthwatering Caribbean dishes tantalize your taste buds. Feast on traditional delicacies prepared by expert chefs, showcasing the rich and diverse culinary heritage of the Caribbean. Indulge in flavorful jerk chicken, succulent seafood, and delectable plantain dishes that will transport you straight to the islands.

Accompanying the culinary extravaganza is a carefully curated selection of premium wines, ensuring the perfect pairing for your palate. Sip on fine wines from renowned vineyards, each sip a reflection of the Caribbean's vibrant spirit. Discover new flavors, expand your wine knowledge, and savor unforgettable moments with every glass.

As the sun sets, get ready to groove to the infectious rhythms of Caribbean music. Feel the pulsating beats of reggae, soca, dancehall, and calypso, moving your body to the lively melodies. Live performances by talented musicians and performers will keep the energy high, ensuring a night of unforgettable entertainment.

Don't miss this opportunity to embrace the Caribbean spirit and celebrate the arrival of spring in style! Tickets are available on AllEvents, so secure your spot today. Join us at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival, where cultures collide and unforgettable memories are made.



2 NIGHT Camping packages available: RV/CAMPER $200 | TENTS $150 Starting on Friday May 17 @ 5pm | 30 RV SPACES | 30+ TENT SPACES



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