Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2008

City should value needs of all residents

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I reviewed the information regarding proposed changes to Rockville’s zoning ordinance contained in the January issue of Rockville Reports, the city’s monthly newsletter for residents.

The proposed zoning ordinance reflects no attempt to protect the residential character and quality of life for certain communities and segments of Rockville’s population.

The areas of Stonestreet Avenue, Southlawn and Lofstrand lanes are recommended for commercial, light industrial, mixed use⁄transitional, and mixed use business.

There is no heavy industrial zoning in the city; it is suggested that it may be needed in the Gude Drive⁄Southlawn Lane area. These areas abut and surround the historic, African-American Lincoln Park Community.

The draft zoning ordinance concentrates industrial and commercial uses in such a way as to further isolate Lincoln Park from the rest of Rockville, prohibit future residential development⁄uses, and make it more challenging, under the proposed zoning ordinance, for Lincoln Park to sustain its viable, residential character. In contrast, residential zoning is recommended for the Twinbrook, West End and College Garden communities.

I hope those responsible for revising, approving, and implementing the zoning ordinance will value the needs and concerns of all Rockville communities and residents.

Lucinda Hall, Rockville