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Town of Chevy Chase
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Send Date:
9/22/2021 3:42:11 PM
Email Subject:
Town Council Requests Resident Feedback -- Should the Town Contribute Funding to the Farm Women's Market Project?

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Town Council Requests Resident Feedback --
Should the Town Contribute Funding to the Farm Women's Market Project?


At its meeting on October 13, the Town Council will discuss the County's request for financial support for the Farm Women's Market project.  On September 20, Town residents received an update on the project from EYA, Bernstein Management Corporation, and the County's Department of Transportation.  This project would refurbish and expand the Farm Women’s Market and result in a much-needed expansion of park and green space for the benefit of the Town and Bethesda.  Most of the surface parking lot directly behind the Market would become a park, as would the entire parking lot between Leland and Walsh streets, and a new underground garage would be constructed on the Market site.  Links to materials from the September meeting, including a sketch plan of the project, are at the end of this message.

The Council's discussion at the October meeting will be a session for expressing preliminary views.  There will be a further process, when the Town Council will request more resident input, before a decision is made.  However, we ask all residents to submit their initial views in advance of the October 13 Council meeting.  We want to hear from as many residents as possible in response to the following questions:

  • Should the Town support this project, and, if so, how much financial support should we provide knowing that a material contribution would be in the millions of dollars?
  • What are these parks and an expanded Farm Women's Market worth to the Town in terms of green space, possible amenities such as a playground, dog parks, a water feature and an amphitheater, the proximity of enhanced opportunities for food shopping and dining, and the revitalization of retail along Wisconsin Avenue?
  • Is a material contribution worth the avoided risk of future development on these lots that would bring high rise development next to our Town?
  • How much of our Town reserves – over $10 million – might we be comfortable committing, given other uses we may also wish to consider for funds? And might we also use a portion of our ARPA money for the green infrastructure components of this project?
  • Given the competing priorities for County funds and the resistance by many in the County to spend for amenities in our area, what level of leadership does the Town want to provide so that this vision becomes a reality?
  • What conditions might the Town attach to a contribution to ensure we receive the value we pay for?

Residents are encouraged to send in comments to the Town Office at townoffice@townofchevychase.org and to take advantage of the two listening sessions that Councilmember Ericson will host on Monday, September 27 at 7 p.m. and Tuesday, October 12 at 7 p.m.  Residents may use the same Zoom link to join both meetings (see below):

Join Online
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3016547144?pwd=NnJvS1BpM3ZkSFA4bXBwbWZhWVM2UT09
Meeting ID: 301 654 7144
Passcode: 6547144

Join by Phone
(301) 715-8592
Meeting ID: 301 654 7144
Passcode: 6547144

Meeting Materials:

Plain text message

Town Council Requests Resident Feedback --Should the Town Contribute Funding to the Farm Women's Market Project?

At its meeting on October 13, the Town Council will discuss the County's request for financial support for the Farm Women's Market project. On September 20, Town residents received an update on the project from EYA, Bernstein Management Corporation, and the County's Department of Transportation. This project would refurbish and expand the Farm Women’s Market and result in a much-needed expansion of park and green space for the benefit of the Town and Bethesda. Most of the surface parking lot directly behind the Market would become a park, as would the entire parking lot between Leland and Walsh streets, and a new underground garage would be constructed on the Market site. Links to materials from the September meeting, including a sketch plan of the project, are at the end of this message.

The Council's discussion at the October meeting will be a session for expressing preliminary views. There will be a further process, when the Town Council will request more resident input, before a decision is made. However, we ask all residents to submit their initial views in advance of the October 13 Council meeting. We want to hear from as many residents as possible in response to the following questions:

Should the Town support this project, and, if so, how much financial support should we provide knowing that a material contribution would be in the millions of dollars?

What are these parks and an expanded Farm Women's Market worth to the Town in terms of green space, possible amenities such as a playground, dog parks, a water feature and an amphitheater, the proximity of enhanced opportunities for food shopping and dining, and the revitalization of retail along Wisconsin Avenue?

Is a material contribution worth the avoided risk of future development on these lots that would bring high rise development next to our Town?

How much of our Town reserves – over $10 million – might we be comfortable committing, given other uses we may also wish to consider for funds?

And might we also use a portion of our ARPA money for the green infrastructure components of this project?

Given the competing priorities for County funds and the resistance by many in the County to spend for amenities in our area, what level of leadership does the Town want to provide so that this vision becomes a reality?

What conditions might the Town attach to a contribution to ensure we receive the value we pay for?

Residents are encouraged to send in comments to the Town Office at townoffice@townofchevychase.org and to take advantage of the two listening sessions that Councilmember Ericson will host on Monday, September 27 at 7 p.m. and Tuesday, October 12 at 7 p.m. Residents may use the same Zoom link to join both meetings (see below):

Join Online
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3016547144?pwd=NnJvS1BpM3ZkSFA4bXBwbWZhWVM2UT09
Meeting ID: 301 654 7144
Passcode: 6547144

Join by Phone
(301) 715-8592
Meeting ID: 301 654 7144
Passcode: 6547144

Meeting Materials:
Video of September 20 Meeting, including answers to residents' questions. Introductory Remarks, providing background on the project.
Sketch Plan for the Farm Women's Market Project, including a description of the proposed community charette process.
Closing Comments , including a list of questions for community consideration.

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Town Council Requests Resident Feedback -- Should the Town Contribute Funding to the Farm Women's Market Project?