Developers break ground on Fenwick Station in Silver Spring -- Gazette.Net


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Developers have broken ground for Fenwick Station in downtown Silver Spring, a transit-oriented development that could be the home of Montgomery County’s first Capital Bikeshare station.

The six-story, 290,000 square-foot project being developed by Arlington, Va.-based Insight Property Group will include 310 residential units, 326 underground parking spaces and more than 8,000 square feet of amenity space including a large clubroom, a fitness center and a library, said Penny Glover, director of marketing for Bethesda-based SK&I Architectural Design Group, L.L.C.

Project planners hope the project will be completed by the end of 2014, Glover said.

The site on Second Avenue was once used as a post office storage lot. Land for the project was dedicated to Montgomery County for the installation of a Capital Bikeshare station and the public plaza, Glover said in an email. The public plaza included in the project’s design will be on the corner of Spring Street and Second Avenue and will contain public art, public seating and a public drinking water fountain, Glover said. A public bike trail runs along Second Avenue and developers hope the future connectivity of the bike trail to the Capital Crescent Trail in Bethesda will help secure a Capital Bikeshare station, she said.

Capital Bikeshare — which has stations throughout Washington, D.C. and Virginia — allows users to rent bikes at any time of the day for any amount of time ranging from a day to a year. Users pay at the electornic paystation provided at the Bikeshare station, ride on one of Capital Bikeshare’s more than 1,600 bikes and return the bike to any Capital Bikeshare’s more than 175 stations.

Monica Hernandez of the District Department of Transportation said Capital Bikeshare is looking to expand into Montgomery County, though she said Monday that no agreement has been reached so far.

The county is looking to bring Capital Bikeshare to two areas with two separate grants, said Sande Brecher, Chief of Commuter Services for Montgomery County’s Department of Transportation. One of those areas is downcounty, which includes Takoma Park and Silver Spring, Friendship Heights, Bethesda and the Medical Center, Brecher said. The second area includes the Shady Grove Life Sciences area and a portion of Rockville.

Brecher said she worked closely with the project planners for Fenwick Station during its approval process to incorporate the Bikeshare station.

She said the county remains in negotiations with Capital Bikeshare and hopes to have this station open with the development.

The building is expected to receive Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification through the U.S. Green Building Council for its features, including a sixth-floor roof terrace that will have a living plant wall, which uses rain water run-off from the roof.

krose@gazette.net