Newell Street to Close This Weekend for Community Gatherings

Newell Street will be closed to traffic this weekend to allow for community gatherings in honor of Veterans Day, Department of Transportation officials announced.

The street will be closed on Saturday, Nov. 12, and Sunday, Nov. 13 from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. each day.

MCDOT announced in August that it would discontinue the Newell Street Streetery and reopen the street to traffic after Labor Day. “Newell Street, managed by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, will reopen to cars after Labor Day. However, it will remain an event-related operation, closing to vehicular traffic for public events throughout the year,” MCDOT said in a press release. “Park and Planning issued a community survey this past spring and received mixed reviews regarding the desirability of use of the street as a public gathering space.”

Former Planning Board Chair Casey Anderson took to Twitter to dispute several points in the original release.

“The county’s press release is inaccurate in several ways,” he wrote. “Newell Street is under [DOT] control, I have no idea what ‘survey’ they are talking about (by us or anyone else), and this was NOT a Montgomery Parks decision.”

MCDOT released a statement in early September, correcting misinformation in the original press release and asking for public feedback.

“The County will coordinate with Parks and community organizations to identify community events or when Newell Street can be available for community use,” the statement reads. “As a starting point to the conversation, the County has identified around 50 days for possible vehicular closure over the next nine months based on holidays and Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) winter and spring breaks.

“The County expects to get underway with planning for the future of Newell Street this fall and will schedule community listening sessions and workshops on how to achieve the best outcome for the redesign of Newell Street. We would like to obtain community input about those features that were most liked and disliked about the temporary use of Newell Street to inform these conversations. In addition, Montgomery Parks has begun engaging the community in the design of the new interim park at the NTB property which will be larger and better suited to active use and will complement the smaller more contemplative Acorn Urban Park. The property was recently acquired, and construction is expected to begin in 2023.

“The County looks forward to working with the Silver Spring community to implement this plan. Please feel free to share your feedback with us via email at newell@montgomerycountymd.gov.”

MCDOT Graphic

 

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