Participating in Washington ULI’s
Rock Springs Park/ Executive Boulevard
Technical Assistance Panel

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Illustration of issues on Executive Boulevard

In December, the Montgomery County Planning Department partnered with the Washington, D.C. District Council of the Urban Land Institute to conduct a Technical Assistance Panel (TAP) to collaborate on how they can improve the functionally obsolete Rock Spring and Executive Boulevard office parks. This workshop included stakeholder interviews, site visits, and roundtable discussions to prepare the panel for the final presentation of challenges and recommendations for improving Rock Spring Office Park and the Executive Boulevard in White Flint. Alex Rixey represented Fehr & Peers DC on the Rock Spring and Executive Boulevard TAP alongside several real estate developers. Their findings included:

 

CHALLENGES of the Rock Spring and Executive Boulevard Areas:

  • Connectivity – Access to offsite amenities and transportation options is automobile-oriented and pedestrian challenged
  • Amenities – The local experience is unpleasant due to lack of amenities
  • Identity – Placeless, blank region
  • Land Use – All existing uses are office buildings

 

RECOMMENDATIONS Addressing these Challenges:

  • Connectivity – Prioritize Infrastructure Improvements to Catalyze Redevelopment
    – Improve intersection geometry and pedestrian crossing at intersection of Old Georgetown Road and Executive Boulevard
    – Improve pedestrian connectivity between Executive Boulevard buildings and the sidewalk
    – Improve pedestrian and bicycle connectivity between Rock Spring and Westfield Montgomery Mall
    – Provide mid-block pedestrian connectivity to break up Rock Spring’s superblocks
    – Provide frequent, non-stop shuttle service between Rock Spring, Metro and the mall
    – Consider Capital Bikeshare and supporting infrastructure on Executive Boulevard for quick connection to Pike & Rose and in Rock Spring for improved connection to the mall
  • Amenities – Improve Local Experience and Provide Diverse Amenity/Use Mix
  • Identity – Leverage adjacent development and existing assets
    – Link Executive Boulevard’s identity to new development at Pike & Rose and streetscape theme of White Flint
    – Build on Rock Spring’s existing medical uses with a fitness focus to support a “Live Well” identity
  • Land Use – Diversify by including local-serving retail and restaurant and introducing residential, perhaps by repurposing existing office, for a complete community

The TAP’s recommended solutions would improve the streetscape and create an active transportation infrastructure that supports a diverse mix of land uses in each study area.

For more about this report, contact ULI:

For more on making suburban settings more active and hospitable, contact Fehr & Peers DC: