The Holton-Arms School’s amended forest conservation plan, which addressed some of the school’s previous violations, was unanimously approved by the Montgomery County Planning Board on Thursday.
In 2010, the private all-girls school in Bethesda, was cited for failing to comply with a 2006 conservation plan and fined $500, according to county records. They submitted a new plan on April 23, 2012.
In the new plan, the school will remove 1,660 feet of conservation easement on the campus, replacing it elsewhere on the site.
Another 20,642 square feet of on-site easements also will be abandoned and replaced with a combination of areas both on and off the campus. The off-site replacement will be twice what is lost at the school campus and planted in a county-approved area, called a “bank.”
County planner Marco Fuster said the areas being abandoned were small swaths — several run alongside a playing field.
As part of the deal, the school would create a swale behind the bleachers to absorb rainfall, which otherwise runs off from adjacent parkland and onto the track.
One of the issues discussed was “encroachments” — or the areas along the edge of the school that border other properties. Neglected and often riddled with garbage, the school agreed to take responsibility for what was their property by cleaning up those areas and planting them with shrubs and appropriate plants.