SILVER SPRING, MD – Want to know more about development projects proposed near where you live or work? To help residents, business people and county officials stay abreast of Montgomery County development activity, the Planning Department has launched a user-friendly Development Finder web site that provides details about building applications to be considered by the Planning Board.
The web page is anchored by a map of Montgomery County featuring pinpoint markers wherever applications recently have been filed. Those markers are hyperlinked to a database of applications specifying locations, applicant information, and details of proposed projects.
The online database, called the Development Activity Information Center and maintained by the Planning Department, includes application information such as the size of proposed buildings, numbers of proposed units, forest conservation plans, landscaping, etc. Links allow a user to download original applications, planner analyses and more.
The Planning Board has authority over development projects throughout the county and considers applications at its weekly meetings. For those who want to follow projects through the review process, the Development Finder provides a portal to project details leading up to the Board’s review.
For example, click on a pinpoint in Kensington to learn about a preliminary plan application for a store expansion; related links take a user to the plan drawing that shows the proposed new building footprint, street rights-of-way and parking as well as the original application from the property owner.
The Development Finder includes applications for preliminary plans, site plans, project plans and sketch plans. The web tool highlights projects submitted from July 1, 2010 to the present. If a project has been approved by the Planning Board, the project comes off the list.
The new Development Finder website is one of several online features designed to make county planning transparent and accessible, even for those who unable to attend Planning Board meetings. The Planning Department last year launched an online tool to locate forest conservation easements, maintains an online sign-up tool to sign up in advance to testify before the Board and, jointly with the Department of Parks, runs a weekly e-newsletter informing about upcoming projects and initiatives.
# # #