Mayor and Council

   For the meeting on:

  January 14, 2013
   Department:   Community Planning and Development Services
   Division:  Planning
   Responsible staff:  Robin Ziek, Historic Preservation Planner
  phone: (240) 314 - 8236

Discussion and Instructions to Staff on an Amendment to the Rockville Comprehensive Master Plan (Attachment A) and Rockville's Amendment to the Montgomery County Heritage Area Management Plan (Attachment B)

Instruct staff to prepare an Ordinance to adopt the amendment to the City's adopted Comprehensive Master Plan to recommend joining the Montgomery County Heritage Area and to adopt the entire Montgomery County Heritage Area Management Plan by reference; and

Instruct staff to prepare an Ordinance to adopt the Rockville chapter as an amendment to the Montgomery County Heritage Area Management Plan, enabling the City to request that the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority (MHAA) amend the boundaries of the Montgomery County Heritage Area to include the City of Rockville.

The State outlines the process by which the boundaries of an existing Heritage Area may be amended (Annotated Code of Maryland, Section 13, Subsection 11). This occurs with an amendment to the City's Comprehensive Master Plan and an amendment to the County's adopted Heritage Area Management Plan.
Comments received throughout the public hearing process were supportive of the City's joining the program, because it will allow non-profit groups and others within the certified area to apply for grants through the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority. Such groups will have to provide a match as required by the State's grant program. In addition, extensive marketing and publicity of both heritage resources and related amenities are provided by related organizations, such as Heritage Montgomery, Inc. and the Maryland Convention and Visitors Bureau.

One resident suggested that the proposed Heritage Area boundary be modestly increased to include the Twinbrook and Shady Grove Metro stations and that the proposed eastward boundary be expanded to the City's corporate limit adjacent to Rock Creek Park (see Attachment C, page C-2). Staff discussed this with staff of the Maryland Historical Trust and there was agreement that the proposed increase to the City's Heritage Area was within the framework of the overall proposal. Staff notes that the Shady Grove Metro Station is outside of the City's corporate limits and, therefore, cannot be included in the Rockville Heritage Area proposal. An amended map is attached for Mayor and Council consideration (see Attachment D, page D-2). If so instructed, staff will make the appropriate changes to all the maps in the proposed amendment.

Mayor and Council History
The Mayor and Council held a Public Hearing on this matter on December 10, 2012. The Mayor and Council heard a short presentation from staff and then received public comments (see Attachment C for a summary). After receiving comments from four individuals, the Mayor announced that the Public Record would be held open until 5:00 p.m. on December 21, 2012.

Public Notification and Engagement
The public hearing before the Mayor and Council was advertised in the Gazette for two weeks prior to the date of the hearing. A press release about the hearing was released on November 16. The Public Record was open until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, December 21, 2012.

Boards and Commissions Review
The Rockville Historic District Commission recommended approval of the public hearing draft at its meeting of July 19, 2012. As required by State Code, the public hearing draft was sent to the State Clearinghouse on August 10, 2012. The Planning Commission conducted a public hearing on October 12, 2012 and approved a resolution on November 14, 2012, thereby approving both documents and recommending them for adoption by the Mayor and Council.

Next Steps
Introduce and Adopt two Ordinances on January 28, 2013, to reflect the distinct steps required of this proposal. Staff will work with the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority (MHAA) to schedule its required public hearing on February 7, 2013. The City shall send a formal application to the MHAA staff by February 22, 2013, so that the full MHAA Board can review the City's application at its April 18, 2013 meeting. MHAA staff has indicated that the MHAA will accept applications for the FY14 grant cycle from City applicants if the above schedule is met.

Attachment A: Amendment to the City's Comprehensive Master Plan to adopt the Montgomery County
Heritage Area Management Plan in full by reference
Attachment A CMP Amendment to Join MCHA.pdf
Attachment B: Rockville Amendment to the Montgomery County Heritage Area Management Plan
Attach B PC Draft HAA 111412.pdf
Attachment C: Summary of public comments and Letter received
Attach C   Public Testimony.pdfAttach C Public Testimony.pdf
Attachment D: Boundary Maps - Current and Revised Proposals
Attach D current and enlarged boundary.pdfAttach D current and enlarged boundary.pdf

Department Head:

Susan Swift, Director of Community Planning and Development Services
Approved on: 12/24/2012

City Manager:

Approved on: 01/07/2013