NEIGHBORS AGAINST MONTGOMERY COUNTY GAITHERSBURG WEST MASTER PLAN PROPOSAL
Dear Montgomery County Council,
We the residents of Washingtonian Woods, Mission Hills, Dufief, Amberfield, Stonebridge, Westleigh, The Woods of Muddy Branch and the area around Belward Farm want to register our protest against the proposed development. We are the families that are doing the living, the getting sick, the dying and the getting well here. We are the pedestrians, the cyclists and the drivers. We love our neighborhoods and we love that it is pedestrian and suburban. We enjoy the campus feeling of the green space and the openness of the sky. We enjoy that we can still (barely but we still can) walk across Muddy Branch into each other's neighborhoods. We enjoy that we can walk and bike to the Giant and Starbucks and businesses along Muddy Branch and to Kentlands. We enjoy that our children can bus safely to the schools. We enjoy that we can bike from our neighborhoods to Rockville Town Center over the bike bridge that bridges our communities. We are a community because we are connected.
The proposed CCT and the build out proposal for Belward Farms will destroy this. It will bifurcate our communities. It will isolate our socio-economically integrated community. Townhouses will be separated from homes. Condos separated from parks. Access to parks cut off from neighborhoods. And pedestrian and cycle friendly ability provided by the CIties of Rockville and Gaithersburg destroyed by this plan.
Scale these plans back. Do not expand our roads. Build bikeways and boulevards. No to the CCT as it is planned. Stop dividing up our communities.
(1) The plans for the Belward Farm will make the City of Gaithersburg look like Tysons Corner. Tysons Corner is treeless, paved, congested and gridlocked. WE DO NOT WANT TO LOOK LIKE TYSONS CORNER.
(2) According to the proposed plan, the intersection of Muddy Branch and Great Seneca Highway will be enlarged to accommodate increased traffic. Wasn't this intersection named by the Washington Post as one of the most traveled and dangerous intersections in the Metro Area?
THE INTERSECTION HAS TOO MUCH TRAFFIC AS IS, IS DANGEROUS AS IS, AND IS BIG ENOUGH AS IS. DO NOT ADD ADDITIONAL TRAFFIC AND MAKE THE PROBLEM WORSE.
(3) This is the intersection that our children travel by bus, car or bike to go to Fields Road Elementary School, Ridgeview Middle School, Quince Orchard High School, as well as numerous other local private schools including Franklin Montesorri School. SAVE OUR CHILDREN FROM THE DANGERS OF MORE TRAFFIC LANES AND MORE TRAFFIC. MAKE IT MORE BIKE AND PEDESTRIAN FRIENDLY.
(4) 20 million square feet of office located nowhere near a Metro Station is unconscionable and goes against good environmental judgement. This is exactly the problem Tysons Corner has now!
NO MORE EMPTY SQUARE FOOTAGE. THERE IS NO GAIN TO SUCH A LARGE CHANGE.
(5) Buildings measuring 150 feet high will be in excess of 12 stories. Rockville Town Center did not expand the roads to this extent and has buildings at 6-8 stories in height. Why are we expanding our roads this way? Surrounding the Rockville Town Center are roads no more than four lanes. There is a boulevard feel to the surrounding roads. Neighborhoods surrounding the New Town Center were not disturbed. The only reason we would expand the lanes to the extent you are proposing is to off-load I-270 traffic onto our neighborhood roads. We don't want to be a THRU-WAY. We live here.
NO MORE THRU-WAYS. BUILD BIKEWAYS and BOULEVARDS. LESS LANES. SCALE BACK THE HEIGHT OF THESE BUILDINGS. CAMPUS Settings NO TO HI-RISES.
(6) This plan goes against the wishes of Mrs. Banks, who sold the property to Hopkins and clearly cared a great deal about farmlands and open spaces and Gaithersburg's as well as Montgomery County's future.
RESPECT YOUR COMMITMENTS. HONOR YOUR PAST. PROTECT YOUR FUTURE.
We the undersigned want you to know our sentiments. We elect our officials to represent us. Represent us now and DO NOT APPROVE THE BELWARD FARM PLAN AS PROPOSED BY JOHNS HOPKINS.