Upcounty Montgomery residents call for community facilities -- Gazette.Net


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Upcounty residents are calling on the county executive to dedicate funding to new community centers for Clarksburg and Poolesville.

The Upcounty Citizens Advisory Board met Monday evening to finalize its recommendations to send to County Executive Isiah Leggett about ongoing projects in the Capital Improvements Program.

The board is asking Leggett to fund a feasibility study for a community center or indoor pool in Clarksburg, and a community center or senior center in Poolesville.

The board is also calling for expanded restroom facilities at the Germantown library as the nearby Germantown Town Center Urban Park nears completion. Board members are anticipating increased need for the library’s facilities as the park starts to see visitors. According to county documents, the park will be completed in 2014 or 2015.

The board also requested the county’s attention to transportation projects that would affect upcounty residents. According to Catherine Matthews, director of the Upcounty Regional Office, the board voted to rate the county’s Midcounty Corridor Study a top priority. Members of the board generally support the concept of a road between Clarksburg and Shady Grove, but decided not to support a specific route, or alternative, until the study is complete.

Upcounty Citizens Advisory Board Chairman Cherian Eapen, a Clarksburg resident, said the board wanted to “get up to speed” on the Midcounty Highway extension issue before making a decision.

The board’s recommendations also include funding the construction of the Md. 355 bikeway project, which will connect Clarksburg and Germantown. The board is also asking that the county expand MARC service along the Brunswick line, ensure the timely construction of Stringtown Road and Snowden Farm Parkway extensions and lobby the Maryland Transit Administration to accelerate funding for the Corridor Cities Transitway.

In the Gaithersburg area, board members are asking the county to assess traffic in the Washingtonian Center area near Sam Eig Highway since more development is planned, especially in the new Crown community.

Board members’ recommendations apply to the county’s Capital Improvement Program for fiscal year 2015 through 2020. Leggett will hold public forums around the county in January to seek input on the fiscal year 2015 operating budget.

scarignan@gazette.net