Transit, Progress Place & Capital Budget on Council’s Sept. 26 Agenda

montgomery county council-for-slider-450x280The Montgomery County Council will continue a public hearing on the Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 26.

The primary purpose of the master plan is to identify the specific lines and approximate station locations for the proposed bus rapid transit lines within Montgomery County, as well as the minimum rights-of-way required for the segments in each line. About three dozen speakers testified in the first part of the public hearing on Tuesday and about the same number are scheduled to testify on Thursday.

The public hearing will be held in the Third Floor Hearing Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. The hearing, along with morning and afternoon worksessions of Council committees, will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM—Cable Channel 6 on Comcast and RCN, Channel 30 on Verizon). The broadcast also will be streamed through the County Web site at

The transit corridors master plan also proposes establishment of several Bicycle-Pedestrian Priority Areas and the addition of a third track on the CSX Metropolitan Branch between Metropolitan Grove and Frederick County to allow for the potential for MARC rail service during other than weekday peak periods.

The Planning Board’s draft of the master plan can be found at: Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan.

The appendix to the master plan draft can be found at:

The Council’s Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee is scheduled to hold as many as five worksessions on the plan. The tentative dates for the worksessions are Oct. 7, 11, 14, 18 and 21.

At 9:30 a.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Council’s Health and Human Services Committee, which is chaired by George Leventhal and includes Councilmembers Nancy Navarro and Craig Rice, and the Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee, which is chaired by Nancy Floreen and includes Councilmembers Leventhal and Marc Elrich, will meet jointly for a worksession on the future of Progress Place in Silver Spring.

The three-building facility on Colonial Lane, which contains several services for the needy including Shepherd’s Table and Community Vision, will be disposed of by the County in exchange for the design and construction of a new Progress Place at another location and a cash payment to the Parking Lot District.

County Executive Isiah Leggett has proposed including 42 personal living quarters in the new facility at an additional cost to the County of approximately $3.7 million. The joint committee in June supported that idea and asked for information about additional cost if even more living quarters are included.

At 2 p.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Navarro and includes Councilmembers Valerie Ervin and Hans Riemer, will address Spending Affordability Guidelines for the Fiscal Year 2015 Capital Budget and the FY15-20 Capital Improvements Program.

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