The White Flint Sector Plan set out a vision for turning the strip malls and parking lots along Rockville Pike into a new downtown, but it could take decades to execute. What we have today are pieces of a city floating in a suburban sea: a few towers, a handful of blocks that are actually nice to walk on, an occasional bike lane.
If you look hard enough, you can see glimpses of what White Flint will become: the quarter of White Flint residents who take transit to work; people filling the parking lot at Pike + Rose for the weekly Pike Central Farm Market; bikes filling the racks outside the Whole Foods at North Bethesda Market.
But what happens next? How will White Flint make the transition from suburban strip to urban boulevard? This is the first post in a series attempting to put together a timeline for the transformation of White Flint. We’ll look at both public and private projects, talk to the people who are making them happen, and tell you what to expect first.
First: A new street grid in White Flint will give people more ways to walk, bike and even drive around while relieve congestion on Rockville Pike. While some streets could open as early as 2015, others are mired in controversy.