Summer 2008

Parkwood Resident's Association

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Next Meeting:
Monday, June 9, 2008 at 7:30
Kensington Parkwood Elementary School

Meet Your New PRA Officers!

New Officers Elected:

The following officers were elected at the March Member meeting:
     President
Vice President
Secretary
Treasurer
Bailey Condrey, Jr.
Julie Tierney
Maryann Dillon (formerly Vice President)
Gerald Sharp
Gail Dalferes Condrey volunteered to be our new Beautification Committee chair. All other committee chairs remain the same.

Letter from the President

Ladies and gentlemen, I became your duly elected president at the March 2008 meeting of the PRA. It was a sweeping landslide that followed a request for volunteers. Iíve never been one to shy away from helping others, but heretofore they had not been as large as a community. That being said, Iím excited about the role and I look forward to assisting Parkwood in taking on the challenges of suburban community life. At that same March meeting, my wife, Gail Dalferes Condrey, volunteered to be Chair of the Beautification Committee, so our little home on Parkwood Drive has been a happening spot.

Since April 1, weíve held a meeting with the old and new officers of the PRA to pass the torch and discuss issues; assisted the Boy Scouts with a clean-up of Rock Creek; participated in a community-wide yard sale at Kensington Parkwood Elementary; conducted a spring cleaning of the Saul Road Island; and held a get-acquainted gathering of volunteers for the Beautification Committee.

Iíve been a communications professional since 1989 and hold degrees in psychology and journalism. Iíve held numerous positions during my career that include public relations and advertising for a plastics industry environmental task force; promotion of methanol fuel cells and alternative fuel vehicles; and copywriting for the National Geographic Societyís web site. Iíve also designed, engineered and built a number of landscaped backyard retreats in Virginia and Maryland over the last decade. Iíve worn many hats that should assist me in helping PRA evolve and effectively deal with the issues and challenges that communities face in modern times. The PRA is always looking for new members and volunteers. The majority of the funds raised by the community go to print and distribute the newsletter, and to beautify the neighborhood common areas. If you know of someone who wants to get involved we can certainly use their funds and energy.

I look forward to meeting you in the coming months and working with all of you on neighborhood issues and projects.

Sincerely,
Bailey Condrey, Jr.
Parkwood Drive

Beautification Committee Update:

Greetings neighbors! As your new Chairperson of the Beautification Committee I want to thank those of you who directed extra donations with your annual PRA dues towards the beautification efforts. Your time or your money Ė both are welcome!! I also thank committee members Kira Lueders, Clare Murphy, Kathy Byars and my husband, Bailey Condrey, for helping me acclimate to this role. So what are we going to accomplish this year?

I am pleased to report that the County has approved the plan Kira Lueders submitted to beautify the Wildwood median at Saul Road and provided a $258.75 grant to help pay for the initiative. So that will be a project we pursue over the remaining spring and summer days. We will use a blend of volunteer work and paid landscapers to help move these things along. Many of you have expressed a desire to see work done in areas other than Saul Road Island. This plan reflects your feedback.

2008 Project List:

  1. DONE - Saul Road island weeded, perennials thinned and trees mulched; Parkwood sign lettering painted
  2. Monitor Saul Road spruce tree health and decide if human intervention is needed
  3. (County Grant Approved) Wildwood median trees mulched; perennial garden at east end using low maintenance native plants
  4. Mulch all trees in remaining medians on Parkwood Drive
  5. Entrance to each park area Ė plant fall bulbs around the signs and areas leading from Parkwood Drive into the park (think low maintenance)
  6. Community gathering in one or more common area to share time together enjoying up close the fruits of our beautification efforts.
How can you help? If you or someone you know is planning a renovation or otherwise need to get rid of plants or bulbs, consider contacting me to see if we can transplant them to one of the common areas throughout the neighborhood. If you want to volunteer a few hours of your time, weíll take it. Monetary donations are great too, but getting out in the fresh air and getting to know your neighbors is what this is all about. Hope to see you soon!

Gail Dalferes Condrey
gdalfere@yahoo.com

Update on the Kensington Sector Plan:

Thanks to last minute efforts by Town of Kensington Mayor Pete Fosselman, the Maryland National Capital Parks & Planning Commission has agreed to keep its review of the Kensington Sector plan on track to start in July, 2008. During the budget process last year the original start date of July 2007 was moved to July 2008 and was at risk of slipping further behind this year. The update of the Sector Plan is an important step in creating a vision for the revitalization of Kensington.

In preparation for the July '07 start date the Coalition of Kensington Communities hosted an open house for members of the community to learn more about the process and provide Park and Planning staff with feedback. This information is now available via the Town of Kensington website: http://www.tok.org/pdfs/sector_plan_kick_off.pdf

The next meeting is scheduled for June 25. As details are finalized we will make them available on the Parkwood listserve.

Final Naval Medical Center Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Points to Commuting Challenges:

As you probably know, the Base Realignment and Closing law (BRAC) calls for moving all of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center operations to the Naval Medical Center campus by September 15, 2011. This will involve the permanent relocation of roughly 2,500 staff and an estimated 1,862 additional daily patients and visitors. This amounts to more than 484,000 additional people working or visiting the facility annually. Overall, this creates the annual movement of more than 1.1 million additional people in and out of the facilities. Helicopter flights are estimated to increase by one to two per month.

The EIS shows that the following intersections already operate at critical lane volumes:

With the additional volume, traffic bottlenecks and congestion will almost certainly increase at these intersections during morning and afternoon peak travel times. The Navy has suggested that numerous intersections can be improved, adding extended turning lanes and traffic lights, but the cost of these improvements may have to be borne by the county. A handout of the proposed changes to intersections and travel lanes will be provided at the June 9th PRA meeting.

Excerpts from Naval Medical Center Traffic Analysis:

The following excerpts from the Naval Medical Centerís traffic engineering study cite proposals for road improvements along particularly congested intersections. Note these suggestions are not yet funded!

ďThe Navy has coordinated the traffic analysis and these potential improvements with the State transportation agencies and remains committed to cooperate to the maximum extent allowed by law with these agencies in the implementation of any or all of the proposed improvement measures. Measures include:

Rockville Pike (MD 355) at Cedar Lane: (1) Add a left-turn lane on the westbound and eastbound approaches of Cedar Lane, or other feasible roadway improvements (including signal optimization); (2) Add an additional lane in each direction along Rockville Pike between Jones Bridge Road and Cedar Lane.
Old Georgetown Road (MD 187) at Cedar Lane (1) Provide an additional left-turn lane along the southbound approach of Old Georgetown Road and provide two receiving lanes along Cedar Lane eastbound. (2) Provide an additional through lane in each direction along the Old Georgetown Road approaches to Cedar Lane.
Rockville Pike (MD 355) at Jones Bridge Road (1) Stripe the inner lane as a left-turn only lane and the right lane as shared through and right lane on the eastbound approach of the intersection. (2) Add an additional lane in each direction along Rockville Pike.
Connecticut Avenue (MD 185) at Jones Bridge Road (1) Provide an additional left-turn lane to the eastbound approach of the intersection; (2) Provide a separate right-turn lane along the southbound approach of the intersection. Note that pedestrian walkways could also be improved if necessary to meet code for any roadways that are widened.

The local funding of necessary improvements may sometimes include federal grants. In addition, under limited circumstances, the Department can provide funding for road improvements outside its property if the projects meet the criteria for Defense Access Road (DAR) program certification.

The DAR Program provides a methodology to determine whether the military can legally pay their fair share of the cost of public highway improvements necessary to mitigate an unusual impact of a defense activity. The DAR program itself does not have funds for such improvements. As with other construction programs, the funding for such improvements (if found eligible) would come through the annual appropriations request process. Under the DAR program, an unusual impact could be a significant increase in personnel at a military installation (currently defined as one that doubles existing traffic at the year of implementation), or one that requires relocation of an access gate, or the deployment of an oversized or overweight military vehicle or transporter unit. The potential improvements listed above in this section do not readily meet the guidance or criteria for DAR certification.

Recommended Internal Improvements for NNMC

The EIS also identifies potential internal traffic improvement measures

North Wood Road Gate:
1) Expand the number of lanes from two lanes to three lanes, with two inbound lanes in the morning peak period and two outbound lanes in the evening peak period. (2) Conduct a study at North Wood Road at Rockville Pike to determine if a traffic signal is warranted and suitable for submission of a request to state and local transportation authorities for funding and implementation.

South Wood Road Gate:
Expand the number of lanes from two lanes to three lanes, with two inbound lanes in the morning peak period and two outbound lanes in the evening peak period.Ē

Have a New Neighbor?

The PRA is looking for ways to reach out to newcomers in the neighborhood. A PRA welcome packet has been developed and Welcome Committee Chair Kathy Byars and PRA Block Captains have been diligently passing our packets out. If you would like to welcome a new neighbor or have Kathy or one of her volunteers drop off a packet, please contact her at (301) 530-9441 or to send an email to: kathybyars@mris.com.

Neighbors Share Information via the PRA Listserv
This e-mail group, more than 400 members strong, is open to all residents of Parkwood, and a great way to share information, such as home improvement contractors or petty vandalism affecting our neighborhood. To subscribe, send a blank message to: parkwoodresidents-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. You will receive a confirmation message when you are subscribed. Do not write anything in the subject or body of the message. It will not be seen by anyone and you will not get a response. This listserv can save the PRA funds and make Parkwood a safer place to live! Sign on to the list serve and get your neighbor to as well!

Time to Pay Your 2008 PRA Membership Dues!

Have You Paid Your 2008 PRA Membership Dues Yet?

If you missed joining up or renewing your membership in January, we encourage you to send in your application. As a member, youíll support PRAís efforts to represent the Parkwood community, share information through meetings and this newsletter, and exchange ideas through our listserv, which is free to everyone in Parkwood, member or not. Please support our efforts for a modest $10 a year.


2008 Membership/Renewal Application Ė Annual Dues per household: $10

Please mail or deliver your 2008 PRA membership renewal dues to: Kitty Stone, 4313 Clearbrook Lane, Kensington, MD 20895. Please make check payable to: Parkwood Residents Association and print your information below:

Name:_______________________________________________________________________________

Address:_____________________________________________ City:___________________Zip:_______

Phone Numbers:(daytime)___________________________evening________________________________

Email:_______________________________________________________________________________

Enclosed:

____   $10 membership dues

____   $____ donation to Beautification Committee (optional)


Parkwood Resident's Association Officers:

President: Bailey Condrey, Jr; 571-213-2729 Cell; beetletrap@mindspring.com
Vice President/Newsletter Editor: Julie Tierney; jcmtierney@hotmail.com
Secretary: Maryann Dillon; 301-493-5140; dillem12@verizon.net,
Treasurer: Gerald Sharp; gbs2001@yahoo.com
PRA Website Address: http://www.parkwoodresidents.org, Webmaster: Peter Mansbach, pmansbach@aol.com




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