Jewish congregation plans new synagogue off Georgia Avenue -- Gazette.Net


The Center for Jewish Living and Learning of Northern Montgomery County is proposing to build a house of worship on property it owns off Georgia Avenue.

Rebecca Walker, an attorney for the law firm Miles and Stockbridge, presented the plans during the Tuesday meeting of the Greater Olney Civic Association.

The orthodox community plans to remove two existing single-family homes on the property of Ohev Sholom Talmud Torah Congregation, 18320 Georgia Ave., combining the parcels into a single property, and build a house of worship. Architectural plans are not yet completed.

In addition to synagogue services, the building will likely house a Hebrew school on the weekends, and a daycare center during the week.

Walker said since the congregants are Orthodox Jews who will do not use motorized vehicles from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday, most of the traffic will be pedestrians.

She said they hope to submit the project to the county planning board before the summer recess or early fall. Construction is likely at least a year or a year and a half away.

The association did not take a position on the project at this time.

An executive visit

County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) gave a State of the County presentation at the meeting of the Greater Olney Civic Association.

He said that in comparing his proposed $4.97 billion budget to that of recent years, it is “somewhat better,” even with some of the challenges faced.

“We are in a much better financial position, and have maintained our AAA bond rating,” he said. “Our reserves are the highest in the history of the county.”

Leggett apologized to the Olney community for the delays in the reopening of the Olney Library, stating that the new library will be a very strong asset for the community, and that the budget includes increased funding for library hours and acquisitions.

When asked about the proposed Bus Rapid Transit system and how it would affect Olney, Leggett replied that the Georgia Avenue line would not be built for “a long, long time, if ever.”

He added that if were to be built, a citizen advisory committee would be a part of the planning process.