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Legislation to Rezone Single-Family Neighborhoods Near Metro Accelerates
Planning Department Begins “Attainable Housing Solutions” Initiative
Last month, we advised the community that Council President Tom Hucker and Councilmember Hans Riemer—who chairs the Council’s Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) Committee—issued a joint letter, requesting the Planning Board to consider "zoning reforms that would allow greater opportunities for Missing Middle housing..., provide opportunity for public input, and transmit to us a Zoning Text Amendment with your recommendations.” The deadline for sending the new ZTA and recommendations to the County Council is June 28, 2021.
In their joint letter, Council President Hucker and Councilmember Riemer asked the Planning Board to consider the concepts contained in ZTA 20-07 which would rezone single family neighborhoods within a mile from Metro to allow duplexes, townhouses, and apartments, as well as the concepts contained in a ZTA drafted by Councilmember Riemer to rezone major roads, called corridors, for denser housing along the corridors near planned Bus Rapid Transit.
In order to explore these housing options, the Planning Department launched an Attainable Housing Strategies (AHS) Initiative, and appointed a small external advisory team called the Housing Equity Advisory Team, or HEAT, consisting of developers, lobbyists, and some civics intended to bring varying perspectives to their analysis. HEAT has held two meetings thus far and is scheduled to meet on April 28 and May 19. To view the recordings of these meetings, and the detailed PowerPoints that explain various options to rezone the single-family neighborhoods and corridors go to https://montgomeryplanning.org/planning/housing/attainable-housing-strategies-initiative/housing-equity-advisory-team/ and scroll down to the “Timeline” section. The public may not attend these meetings, but may watch the videos that are posted after the meetings.
In addition, as an equal part of the Initiative, the Planning Department is also providing opportunities for public participation on how to proceed with creating more tools to address the housing needs in the county through public virtual meetings: https://montgomeryplanning.org/montgomery-planning-announces-launch-of-attainable-housing-strategies-initiative-to-help-address-montgomery-countys-housing-crisis/
Any county residents who are concerned about the rezoning of their neighborhood are encouraged to get informed and express their concerns to members of the County Council. Emails may be sent to the Council President, Tom Hucker, Councilmember.Hucker@montgomerycountymd.gov; to our Council Member Andrew Friedson, Councilmember.Friedson@montgomerycountymd.gov, and to the Chair of the PHED Committee, Hans Riemer, Councilmember.Riemer@montgomerycountymd.gov.