Montgomery County Councilmember Evan Glass tweeted this afternoon (December 31, 2020) that MoCo has distributed almost 3,000 Moderna COVID-19 vaccines in the last 48 hours, in addition to the Pfizer vaccine which has been making the rounds with hospital frontline staff across the county.

It also appears that nursing homes will be receiving doses through a direct partnership with retail pharmacies in the area; Glass noted that this process was being coordinated directly by the state of Maryland.

Glass clarified that MoCo’s ability to distribute the vaccine effectively is directly tied to Maryland’s to distribute vaccines directly to MoCo; reporting yesterday (December 30) in the Baltimore Sun noted that more than 80% of MD’s vaccines that are on hand had not yet been administered.


Last night (December 14th), the City of Gaithersburg Mayor and City Council held a joint work session with the Gaithersburg Planning commission to discuss findings from the Lakeforest Mall Master Plan engagement efforts.

On August 10th, the Mayor and City Council put into motion an amendment process for the Lakeforest Mall Master Plan, which would consider input from extensive public engagement to then produce a new design plan for the Lakeforest site that establishes an overall vision for the future development.

The public engagement strategy yielded 3,463 respondents to an online survey, with 739 paper surveys received.  This put the response rate for City of Gaithersburg residents at 10.4%.

In a presentation given to the Mayor and council, Gaithersburg Long Range Planning Manager Rob Robinson stated that the findings of the public engagement efforts have shown that there is a majority consensus that the Lakeforest site’s redevelopment should be mixed use. The Planning Department estimates that there will be 20,000 new City of Gaithersburg residents by 2045, which each bring demand for increased housing, jobs, and mixed use needs.

Robinson additionally noted that the Lakeforest site should be a “destination” that would generate a special “sense of place” that appeals to a diverse set of people from a wide array of communities. Walkability and inclusion of green spaces also was important to the public, according to the Planning Department.

Ultimately, the Planning Department has recommended a master plan amendment that address three main facets: support area housing needs, create jobs across several career levels, and create economic activity. The Planning Department emphasized the need to go beyond standard mixed use playbooks for the Lakeforest site. Usually, people think of a combination of residential and retail sites when they hear the phrase “mixed-use”. Planning Dept. staff has suggested considering other mixed use options, including R&D, community & civic uses, light manufacturing, etc. It will be interesting to see how much of these types of spaces will be included in the eventual redevelopment of the site. Eventually, the Planning Department recommends the replacement of much of the surface parking lot space with more inventive uses.

In terms of next steps, the composition of the Master Plan will get going in earnest following this Joint Work Session, with a draft of the Master Plan set to be generated in spring of 2021, with eventual adoption and approval of the plan tentatively set for summer of 2021.




Tired of Dodging Potholes on Your Street? You Can Ask MoCo to Fix Them!

Many of us are familiar with the stark and sudden feeling of horror that can come after speeding through an unexpected pothole. Crunch! Some might liken it to stubbing your toe in the night when you’re stumbling into the dark towards your kitchen for a midnight snack…only, the pothole might feel just a bit more painful, and potentially much more expensive.

Other times, you might feel like you are a stunt driver in the way you weave through your neighborhood on the way home from a long day at work, avoiding chasms in the road that are distributed ever so inconveniently amidst parked cars.

The good news is, MoCo residents don’t have to settle for sitting around and grumbling ineffectually amongst themselves about roads that sometimes feel nearly impassable — in fact, Montgomery County’s Department of Transit encourages residents to notify them of any necessary repairs to county-maintained roadways.

The DOT has a convenient online form for submissions of road repair requests. The county website states that a transit representative will investigate the request in no later than five business days (however, some online requests will be investigated the very next business day, so don’t let that hold you back).

Not all roads in Montgomery County are maintained by the MoCo Department of Transit. The bigger numbered roads (Rt. 355, 27, 185, etc.) are maintained by the Maryland State Highway Administration — however, you can make online requests for those state-maintained roads here.

There are also some roads that are maintained by municipalities within the county (City of Rockville/Gaithersburg). If you know that the road you are struggling with is within the incorporated city limits, you can contact Gaithersburg’s Public Works Department at 301-258-6370 and Rockville’s at 240-314-8567.

What are some MoCo roads that you feel deserve some real TLC? Comment below (and then contact the appropriate maintenance authority to get them fixed!).


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The City of Rockville has moved closer to approving a new Chase Bank with a drive-thru at the site previously occupied by Meixin Supermarket. Meixin Supermarket was a popular Asian market in the area, but it closed about two years ago; the site, located at 460 Hungerford Dr, Rockville, MD 20850, has been vacant ever since.

In August of 2019, Bohler Engineering initially submitted the site plan and pre-application for the proposed Chase Bank at the Meixin site. Planning and development are gradual processes, and last week, Rockville’s Planning Department formally accepted the site plan for the bank, deeming it complete.

The City of Rockville’s Development Review Committee is set to meet in December to continue to formalize the development approval, but it looks like Rockville residents will have one more option for their banking needs in the not-too-distant future.

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Many of you may have spent a sun-splashed day roaming the 18.3-acre grounds of Nike Missile Park in Gaithersburg near Snouffer School Road. However, this site was not always the lovely green space that we see today – and the “Nike” is not referring to the Swoosh we’re all familiar with. Project Nike was an anti-aircraft missile initiative that traces its roots back to 1944, when the U.S. Department of War (now the Department of Defense) tasked its scientists and engineers to develop a widespread anti-aircraft missile system. During the Cold War, tensions were at a fever pitch, and the U.S. military sought to ensure that the nation was protected in the event of an attack.

Previously known as Site W-94 in the Washington-Baltimore Defense Area (BA, W), the Gaithersburg site was one of several Nike facilities across the capital region equipped with anti-aircraft infrastructure for use in the case of airborne attacks. The site was equipped with the Nike Ajax (MIM-3) missile systems, which were the main foundation of the Nike program until the mid-1960s. Once the technology advanced past the Ajax’s point, the Gaithersburg Nike Missile site was deactivated and demolished, with the core site being transferred to the National Park Service and the surrounding areas developed into residential lots. In 1997, the National Park Service then transferred the site to the Maryland-National Capital Park Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), at which point we gained the Nike Missile Park that we know today.


The Washington Football Team may not be tearing it up this year, but they find themselves within striking distance for a division crown amidst a group of teams that have underwhelmed.

One of the big reasons for the WFT’s success this season has been their defensive play; one of their biggest stars this season has been Kendall Fuller, a 2013 graduate of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School in Olney, MD.

Fuller is tied for the league lead with four interceptions, and has been rated this season as highly as the 4th best cornerback on Pro Football Focus, a well-respected analytical grading system in the NFL.

Though he was born in Baltimore, Fuller accelerated his football development at Good Counsel while also competing in track and field.

Kendall rose through high-school football’s recruiting ranks to become a top-10 ranked player in his graduating class. After attending Virginia Tech, he was drafted by Washington in the 3rd round of the 2016 NFL draft. After impressing early on in his first couple of seasons, he was traded to the Kansas City Chiefs in the deal that would bring Alex Smith to Washington.

The trade to Kansas City worked out pretty well for Kendall, who ended up winning a Super Bowl in 2019 after intercepting a pass in the dying embers of the game. After becoming a champion, Fuller decided to come back to where it all began, signing a four year deal with the Washington Football Team.

Public-domain photo courtesy of All-Pro Reels.


Ok, Google: Which MoCo Park is the Best?

The weekend will find many of us soaking up some sun or walking around in one of Montgomery County’s many parks.

According to the Montgomery Parks website, Montgomery County has 424 parks across over 37,000 acres in their network.

These parks are quite diverse; some stretch across wide green spaces for hundreds of acres, while others are smaller pop-up styles in more urban areas, or bigger “destination” types for specific sports or activities. This diversity is part of what makes enjoying the outdoors so enjoyable for MoCo residents.

As you all know, we love lists here at The MoCo Show. In that spirit, let’s countdown the top 10 highest-rated and reviewed parks in Montgomery County, according to Google. You might be surprised with the results!

Disclaimer: this list is based on parks that are 1) a part of Montgomery Parks’ network of parks (no city-maintained parks), and 2) have 200+ reviews on Google. The rankings are based on a combination of total reviews and star rating. All images are courtesy of Montgomery Parks’ website.

10) Ridge Road Regional Park: 21155 Frederick Rd, Germantown, MD 20876

4.5 stars & 226 reviews

This park boasts multiple ball fields, an in-line hockey rink, and various shaded picnic areas on 56 acres of land. Reviewers lauded the park’s green space and its peaceful, quiet locale. There’s even an enclosed area for dogs to stretch out their legs when overcome by “the zoomies.”

9) Meadowbrook Local Park:7901 Meadowbrook Ln, Chevy Chase, MD 20815

4.5 stars & 238 reviews

Meadowbrook Local Park is located next to Rock Creek Park in Chevy Chase, but it has a lot of appeal on its own. It has five different softball fields, a rentable recreational building. Previously, the playground equipment was painted in a unique “candy cane” pattern.

8) Falls Road Local Park: 12600 Falls Road, Potomac, MD 20854

4.6 stars & 224 reviews

Reviewers loved the award-winning Hadley Playground onsite, and that makes this park a great attraction if you’re in the area. The parking area has been recently renovated, and the green-space filled park also boasts outdoor exercise equipment and a grass-infield baseball field.

7) Meadowside Nature Center: 5100 Meadowside Ln, Rockville, MD 20876

4.7 stars & 206 reviews

Unfortunately, Meadowside Nature Center’s main building area is closed due to COVID-19 — however, when we reach the new normal, you really should consider checking it out if you haven’t already. The Center offers some great natural education options (both indoor and outdoor) that allow MoCo residents to learn more about the natural world around them. There are still some wonderful hiking trails surrounding the area, in the meantime.

6) Sligo Creek Stream Valley Park: 15131 Anacostia Tributary Trail System, Silver Spring, MD 20901

4.6 stars & 315 reviews

Is it a creek or a stream? Both? Regardless, you will find some of the most beautiful hiking and biking trails here. Reviewers noted its picturesque locale and shady trails that lead to some of the best strolls you will find in MoCo. It also links to a few other local parks and has multiple entrances depending on where you want to hop in.

5) Cabin John Regional Park: 7400 Tuckerman Lane, Bethesda, MD 20817

4.6 stars & 563 reviews

At this point, we start getting into the real heavyweights in terms of review traffic. Cabin John Regional Park is truly one of the main havens for sports-lovers in MoCo, boasting attractions like an ice rink, well-maintained sports fields, five miles of hiking and biking trails, and even a miniature train for riding (currently closed for COVID).

4) South Germantown Recreational Park: 18041 Central Park Circle, Boyds, Maryland 20841

4.6 stars & 594 reviews

The first of two Boyds-based entries on our list, South Germantown Recreational Park is absolutely one of MoCo’s most active parks in terms of foot traffic. There are so many options for both young and old at this park, including (but not limited to) mini-golf, a driving range, archery, the Maryland SoccerPlex & Montgomery TennisPlex, and even the King Barn Dairy Museum — a museum all about cows and dairy farms in the county!

3) Black Hill Regional Park: 20930 Lake Ridge Drive, Boyds, Maryland 20841

4.8 stars & 812 reviews

Black Hill boasts over 2,000 acres for various activities. Set on the beautiful Little Seneca Lake, visitors can enjoy the tranquility of canoeing or kayaking on a bright and sunny say; the park also has several picnic shelters and over five miles for wooded hiking and biking. Reviewers consistently point to Black Hills as one of the most beautiful locations in MoCo.

2) Rock Creek Regional Park: 6700 Needwood Rd, Derwood, MD 20855

4.7 stars & 1,433 reviews

“Wait, isn’t Rock Creek Park in D.C? That’s not MoCo!” Well, over 70% of Rock Creek itself is located in MoCo, so maybe it’s time for MoCo to be a little more assertive in its claim on Rock Creek, but that’s for another time. Rock Creek Regional Park, however, is definitely in MoCo, containing the lovely Lake Needwood and  also consisting of several miles of trails that extend to the Washington, D.C. line.

1) Wheaton Regional Park: 2000 Shorefield Road, Wheaton, Maryland 20902

4.7 stars & 2,005 reviews

We all know the elephant in the room here: Brookside Gardens is not included on this list. What a lot of people may not know is that Brookside Gardens is housed on the grounds of Wheaton Regional Park, and it’s important not to sell the grounds short beyond Brookside Gardens. The grounds is 536 acres, after all. Visitors can traipse through 11 miles of trails, board a replica 1863 train for a tour of the grounds, lace up their skates at the Wheaton Ice Arena, or, yes, enjoy the beauty of the acclaimed Brookside Gardens.

What are some of your favorite parks? Perhaps you won’t tell us, as you want to keep your favorite spots well-kept secrets. Regardless, we can all agree that MoCo has a wealth of options for recreation, and we love to showcase that.


Is Wawa Still Coming to MoCo?

Is Wawa Still Coming to MoCo?

We have received this question more than any other in the last few months.

Back in May of 2019, we broke the news that Wawa’s first MoCo location would be opened in Gaithersburg at the old Becraft Antiques location on 355 across from Gaithersburg High School (405 S Frederick Ave).

You may be wondering: why hasn’t construction begun on the site?

In October of 2019, the Gaithersburg City Council approved the schematic development plan (SDP) for Wawa’s 5,000+ square foot site, which in theory would’ve paved the way for construction to begin. However, per Dan Schere of Bethesda Beat, the project soon hit a roadblock.

Public opposition to the proposed site led to a group of 14 community members filing an administrative appeal in the Montgomery County Circuit Court. This stalled the development of the site indefinitely.

The opponents of the Wawa site have stated that the Wawa site does not align with MoCo’s master plan and would generate traffic and noise annoyances for residents in the surrounding areas.

Their initial appeal kicked off a lengthy period of litigation and appeals processes. The Montgomery Circuit Court denied the initial appeal, but as of this September, the opponents’ appeal has made it to the Maryland Court of Special Appeals. No hearing date had been set as of last month.

The ongoing litigation has found us in November of 2020 with no advancement on the construction of the site.

Wawa had initially planned on opening the location by the end of 2020, but that timeline is clearly no longer plausible. Supporters of the site will need to wait out the litigation to see if the site’s construction will be greenlit.


Survey: MoCo Govt. Seeks Community Input on Public Safety

As part of Montgomery County’s “Reimagining Public Safety” (RPS) task force, the public is encouraged to participate in an online community input survey — the survey link can be found here.

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich invited residents to answer a survey designed to gauge their assessment of the Montgomery County Police Department, its structure, services, and funding.

The survey is quite comprehensive, with more than 50 questions geared towards public safety scenarios and issues; citizens may participate in the survey until November 14, 2020. Once the community responses are received and aggregated, a virtual community forum will be held to discuss the results on December 3, 2020.

County Executive Marc Elrich urged MoCo residents to participate in the survey in a November 1 letter, noting that community input was paramount in the consideration of improving policing and public safety efforts in Montgomery County. The county hopes that more input from diverse voices can help lead to development of policies and solutions that further benefit the public.

The RPS initiative’s stated goals are “…building a more equitable and inclusive Montgomery County by promoting safe neighborhoods and communities that are better for all County residents.”




Have you noticed what seem to be traffic lights during rush hour on entry ramps on I-270?

They are ramp meters; ramp meters are a part of the I-270 Innovative Congestion Management (ICM) Project, a traffic-congestion improvement project spearheaded by the MD Department of Transit’s State Highway Administration.

Ramp meters are a tool that have been used for decades in multiple big cities across the country. Ramp meters are installed along the entrance ramps to freeways where they regulate the rate at which vehicles can enter the main highway, with the goal of reducing congestion on the highway.

Some opponents of ramp meters have asserted that the meters can cause backups that spill off into the entry ramps’ feeder streets, in addition to causing merging troubles off of some ramps. Supporters say that the meters help to reduce overall congestion on 270, particularly in the local lanes.

MD plans to continue installing ramp meters on I-270, with completion expected at the end of summer 2021. To learn more about the I-270 Innovative Congestion Management (ICM) Project, you can click here.

What are your thoughts on ramp meters?

Image courtesy of the MD DOT SHA website.


The City of Gaithersburg issued a press release today stating that Federal Realty Investment Trust (FRIT) has approved approximately $6.6 million in property improvement expenditures for the Gaithersburg Square shopping center located at 524 North Frederick Avenue. The shopping center dates back to 1965.

The renovations are set to begin in 2021. They will include a brand new plaza area with outdoor dining and amenities, in addition to a more streamlined shopping experience.

To read the City of Gaithersburg’s official press release, please click here.

Image courtesy of the Federal Realty Investment Trust website.


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