City Scene

Public Hearing on Stevenson Property Reveals Access Issues

Craftmark Homes would like to build a maximum of 83 townhomes and condos on the 5.69-acre Stevenson property, located adjacent to the Watkins Mill Town Center (Parklands) subdivision and currently zoned MXD (Mixed Use Development). A public hearing on Sept. 6 on Craftmark’s submitted sketch plan revealed access issues created by adjacent developer BP Realty’s intention not to extend Exchange Avenue to the Stevenson property and the unsuitability of Metropolitan Grove Road for public access. Metropolitan Grove Road is unpaved and only 15-feet wide; accessing the Stevenson property on this road would also require use of the existing at-grade railroad crossing.

City staff is looking into these access issues. The Planning Commission will hold their record open until 5 p.m. Oct. 11 with anticipated recommendation on Oct. 19. The Mayor and City Council will hold its record open until 5 p.m. Oct. 20 with anticipated policy discussion on Nov. 7.

This proposed residential development will feed into the Quince Orchard cluster. Students will attend Brown Station Elementary, Lakelands Park Middle and Quince Orchard High.

City May Expand Tobacco Ban

On Sept. 6, the Mayor and City Council considered ordinance amendments that would expand the ban of the use of tobacco products on city property, with some exceptions, and heard public testimony. Proposed amendments would prohibit the use of all tobacco products, including chewing tobacco, vaping and e-cigarettes, in all public buildings and on public property in general, including all areas of municipal parks.

City Declares September Recovery Month

At its meeting on Sept. 6, the Mayor and City Council declared September 2016 as Alcohol and Drug Addiction/Mental Health Recovery Month. Gaithersburg owns and operates Wells/Robertson House, a 14-bed transitional housing program for homeless men and women in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction, and DeSellum House, which offers transitional housing for Wells graduates. Activities throughout the month will highlight the message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, prevention works, treatment is effective, and people recover from mental and/or substance use disorders.

Volunteer for the Compensation Review Committee

The City of Gaithersburg is seeking residents to serve on an Ad Hoc Mayor and City Council Compensation Review Committee. Every four years an Ad Hoc Committee is formed and charged with reviewing the compensation of elected officials of other jurisdictions in the region, examining the current work load of the Gaithersburg Mayor and City Council, and making recommendations for compensation adjustments as appropriate. The Committee is also charged with reviewing and recommending adjustments to stipends for the Planning Commission, Board of Appeals and Historic District Commission members.

The Ad Hoc Committee’s recommendations are advisory in nature and the Mayor and City Council have the option of accepting, rejecting or modifying recommendations. To be considered for appointment please send a letter of interest and a resume to Mayor Jud Ashman via e-mail to or to Gaithersburg City Hall, 31 South Summit Ave., Gaithersburg, MD, 20877.  The deadline for submission is Oct. 7.

Share Your Model-Building Skills

A Discovery Day: Model Building event at the Gaithersburg Community Museum is planned for Sunday, April 23, 2017 from 1 to 4 p.m. To help families explore this wonderful hobby, the museum is seeking model-building organizations, individuals and related retail businesses to provide demonstrations and exhibits. There is no fee to participate; however, hobby businesses are being asked to donate model kits and/or gift certificates that the museum may use as prize giveaways.

Application forms are available on the Community Museum page at For more information, email Karen Lottes at or call 301.258.6160.