County Council Approves Controversial Wildwood Apartment


The Montgomery County Council today approved rezoning at the Wildwood Medical Center on Old Georgetown Road that would allow for a new five-story, 58-unit apartment complex. Neighbors of the property at 10401 Old Georgetown Rd. argued against the plan because of school overcrowding, traffic and environmental concerns. But after the County Planning Board imposed setback requirements and made the planned apartment part of the county's Productivity Housing program, the Wildwood Manor Citizens Association did not oppose it at a special exception hearing. Six individual residents opposed the project at a Board of Appeals hearing. The Hearing Examiner filed his report and recommendation in favor of the project in December. The property, which has a three-story, 36,000-square foot medical office building, bank and 206 parking spaces, was supposed to add a general office building. But property owners came back to the county with a new plan for apartments after finding little interest in a struggling office market. The county's Productivity Housing program requires 35 percent of the units (21 units) will be below the area-wide median income. The program is meant to provide for affordable housing in new projects in commercial or office zones. With nearby Walter Johnson High School already overcrowded and with no expansions planned, Hearing Examiner Martin Grossman found that overcrowding was a "legitimate community concern." But he said the overcrowding issue would be addressed by the Planning Board when evaluating the project's site plan. Photo via Google Maps

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