Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Strike three.

Rock Creek Hills Park's nearest neighbors are the residents of the Kensington Park retirement community. It was built by the Montgomery County Housing Opportunities Commission (HOC), financed mostly with tax-exempt bonds, on much of the site of the former Kensington Junior High School, to provide independent living, assisted living, and Alzheimer's care to two hundred senior citizens.

The County Board of Ed recently proclaimed that they intend to replace these seniors' park setting with a middle school complex. The site is inadequate to support a 900-student school, let alone afford for peaceful and appropriate co-existence with its senior or other neighbors.

So, we ask: Given the large public investment in the senior housing facility, not to mention general principles of transparency & community involvement, how did MCPS & the Board of Ed communicate their consideration of such a proposal to Kensington Park's land-owners (the HOC), managers, and residents?

This question is easily answered. Here is our understanding of the record of MCPS & Board of Ed notification to the HOC & the management & residents of Kensington Park:
  1. Prior to the Board's April 28th vote to take the park: None.
  2. Prior to the Board's May 23rd vote to hire an architect: None.
  3. Prior to tomorrow's meeting of the MCPS "Facility Advisory Committee": None.
When will the Board & the MCPS stop treating these seniors as if they don't exist? When will the Board listen to voices from our communities?

[CORRECTION (6/9/11): This report on the record of notification contains an error, for which we apologize. We have recently learned that one letter was sent from MCPS to Kensington Park prior to yesterday's (6/8/11) "Facility Advisory Committee" meeting.]

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