Council Agenda: Shady Grove Annexation, VisArts Projects and Town Center

Housing issues, including Fireside Park Apartments and federal aid, also on the schedule.


A draft plan for annexing part of Shady Grove Road, funding for VisArts, a discussion of the future of Town Center and a contract for legal services are on the Rockville City Council’s agenda for Monday.

The council at . The meeting will be broadcast live on Rockville 11.

Shady Grove Road annexation

The council is scheduled to vote on a draft plan to annex part of Shady Grove Road into the city.

The vote is the next step on the way to a Sept. 10 public hearing on the proposal. A final vote would follow, with the annexation going into affect 45 days after approval by the council.

The proposed annexation is in response to Gaithersburg’s effort to annex the former Great Indoors site, which sits on the southern side of Shady Grove Road closest to Rockville.

The Gaithersburg City Council is scheduled to hold .

In a blog post on Patch on Monday, Rockville City Councilman Tom Moore called for Gaithersburg to reconsider the annexation saying it could “.”

Rockville officials have said .

VisArts funding

The council is scheduled to vote on whether to allow VisArts to change the way it spends a grant from the city.

The city set aside $30,000 in the fiscal 2013 budget so that the arts center could construct a bathroom in its ground-floor gallery. has since decided against constructing the bathroom, its executive director wrote in a July 23 letter to the council. Instead, VisArts is requesting the ability to use $23,923 in city aid for three projects:

  • Push button door openers to improve accessibility to four existing public bathrooms.
  • Window shades on the second floor.
  • New flooring in the main event room.

The change, which is being recommended by city staff, would save the city about $6,000. VisArts received $25,000 in a state bond bill for the $47,847 cost of the projects. In order to be spent, the funds must be matched.

Fireside Park Apartments

The council is scheduled to vote on a resolution to allow Rockville Housing Enterprises to exercise the right of first refusal to purchase the

RHE, which administers public housing in the city, has been meeting with the county to assess the feasibility of purchasing the apartment complex at 735 Monroe Street, according to a report by city staff. The 236-unit garden-style complex went on the market in April. The county notified the city July 6 that an offer for the property had been received. 

Community Development Block Grants

The council is scheduled to discuss the allocation of federal Community Development Block Grants that would become available in fall 2013.

The city received a total of $211,312 in the current funding round. But the program has been cut considerably in recent years and “additional reductions are possible,” .

Staff is recommending that the city allocate 100 percent of the expected grant dollars to Rockville Housing Enterprises for public housing renovations and to the city’s program for providing aid to low- and moderate-income households to rehabilitate single-family homes. Staff is also calling for the city to pay for a part-time position for a housing specialist through the general fund instead of through the federal aid program.

Town Center Phase 2

The council also is scheduled to discuss the future of Town Center in the block north of Beall Avenue and .

Chevy Chase-based developer JBG has filed a pre-application to build a 24,000-square-foot, two-story, mixed-use building on the site of the former Giant Food store at 275 North Washington St., city staff wrote in a report to the council. The building would include retail or restaurant space, and a bank on the first floor and office space on the second floor, with an underground parking garage.

“The Town Center Master Plan envisions the extension of Maryland Avenue north of Beall Avenue as the continuation of the pedestrian oriented spine that is the primary organizing element of the Town Center,” the report said. 

City staff is recommending that the city strategize on how to move forward on redeveloping the area, including a meeting between Mayor Phyllis Marcuccio and JBG representatives.

Consent agenda 

The consent agenda includes votes on:


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