SILVER SPRING, MD – Under a proposed agreement, the Montgomery County Planning Board and private development team SilverPlace, LLC could convene interactive design workshops (charrettes) with the community as early as January 2008 to lay the groundwork for SilverPlace – a project slated to include a new Park and Planning headquarters, condos, rental units, retail and open space at Georgia Avenue and Spring Street.
The non-binding agreement (formally known as a memorandum of understanding) is scheduled for discussion and action at the Planning Board’s public session on Thursday, November 8 at approximately 1 p.m. Residents and community organizations are invited to attend and testify at the hearing. View the proposed agreement.
The agreement establishes the roles and responsibilities of the Planning
Board and the development team in the project’s initial stages, which involve
developing a design concept for and working out the details for moving forward.
More detailed and substantive agreements
are expected later.
“The most important element is the requirement for a fresh look at the
design of the entire public-private project through a series of charrettes,”
explained Planning Board Chairman Royce Hanson.
“The charrettes will match design talent with public perspectives to
produce a concept that meets the Commission’s need for a headquarters and sets
a new standard for public buildings and urban open space. We also want to provide an exemplary housing
development that accommodates a wide range of incomes, respects and fits well
into the neighborhood while exceeding environmental standards.”
At the charrettes, architects will begin putting ideas to paper and obtaining
input for initial design proposals from outside experts, community members and
staff who will eventually move into the headquarters. The community design phase is expected to
take up to 10 months.
Under the proposal, the Park and Planning Commission will negotiate a future agreement to sell part of its property to the private development team to build the residential and retail components of the project. Another agreement will spell out the range of costs and fees associated with design and construction.
To address the lack of affordable housing in the county, SilverPlace will
include a minimum of
30 percent affordable residences. Like all new or proposed public projects in Montgomery County, SilverPlace will meet “silver” or higher environmentally friendly standards set forth by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).
In 2005, Park and Planning officials released a competitive request for proposals for the SilverPlace project. Among the three development teams who responded with a proposal, SilverPlace, LLC was ranked the top contender. During the competition for the project -- for illustrative purposes only -- development teams submitted conceptual architectural renderings for the site. The Board has made no decisions on the design or placement of buildings.
Along with considering the first agreement for SilverPlace, the Board will consider a request for funding to the County Council to begin the design phase and convene the charrettes with stakeholders. The funding request may be up to $4.9 million and will cover the cost of the project’s schematic design.
Montgomery County Planning Board
Proposed agreement between the Planning Board and SilverPlace, LLC
Thursday, Nov. 8, 2007 – approximately 1 p.m.
Park and Planning Headquarters
8787 Georgia Avenue
Silver Spring, MD