Wash Post Summary of yesterday’s Planning Board Votes

Wash Post Summary of yesterday’s Planning Board Votes

Today’s Washington Post has an article on yesterday’s Montgomery County Planning Board actions. The article is sometimes odd and distorted, as in suggesting that the new White Flint “could be larger than Tysons Corner;” since Tysons Corner is four times larger than the White Flint area, that seems unlikely. (for clarification – here are the numbers: Tyson’s will be between 100 million and 150 million square feet of commercial development vs a total in White Flint of 13 million sf of commercial development at total build out.  Tyson’s is 1600 acres vs. 430 acres for White Flint.  Tyson’s will be between 8 and 12 times the amount of commercial development of White Flnt and it is 4 times the size in land area. see my comment below)

The article compresses the Planning Board’s West Gaithersburg, White Flint and general growth policy actions into one short piece, so impressions may be misleading to those who don’t separate the three actions. The general gist of the article is that “Montgomery is expected to grow by more than 1 million residents in the next 20 years and is almost out of space to build, so planners say trying a new development approach is the best option for absorbing newcomers. But many residents, accustomed to a suburban lifestyle built around the automobile in a county with limited public transportation, fear the changes would cause problems.”

In support for this last statement regarding White Flint, the article quotes only the “White Flint Coalition, a group of neighborhood organizations near White Flint mall in North Bethesda, said some elements are “unconscionable.”” The article doesn’t say which “elements” are “unconscionable.” And the White Flint Community Coalition, a group of some community organizations near White Flint which is probably the quoted group, is  not on record as favoring continuing the area’s love for the automobile.

Nevertheless, the article can be found at:


Barnaby Zall

Barnaby Zall


One comment


Tyson’s Corner is being planned for between 100 and 150 Million SF of commercial development. White Flint will be adding about 5 Million SF for a grand total of 13 Million SF of commercial. Tyson’s will be approximately 10 times the development of White Flint. In land area, White Flint is 430 acres while Tyson’s is 1600 acres so once again you can see the startling difference. It is interesting to note that while Tyson’s is 4 times the land area, it is 10 times the proposed development so it will be a much higher density urban area than White Flnt will ever be.

On the reaction to the plan, I agree with you Barnaby that it is not ideal that the article combines the White Flint plan which has a good amount of civic support with the more controversial West Gaithersburg plan. There is a large residential community of supporters who need to get their voices heard on White Flint in the coming months leading up to the public hearing at the Council.

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