April 1, 2011

Wheaton town square will stay public, emulate Bethesda

A parking lot in downtown Wheaton will soon be transformed into a town square. Not only will it make the area more walkable and vibrant, but Montgomery County officials say it will belong to the public and emulate many elements of the successful Bethesda Row. A few weeks ago, I wrote about concerns that the new square on what's now Parking Lot 13 would not be owned by Montgomery County, which raises some serious issues about the public's right to public space.

In contrast, Montgomery County leased downtown Silver Spring's Ellsworth Drive to a private developer. After private guards hassled photographers taking pictures on Ellsworth, County Executive Ike Leggett clarified that it is a "public forum" allowing free expression and photography. SOURCE: Greater Greater Washington

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