Mary, Mary, quite contrary How does your garden grow?
With condos and apartments
and hi-rises all in a row.

Economic development

Supporters of a 30-year master plan for land use in Montgomery County, called Thrive 2050, insist it won’t rewrite zoning laws that govern the residential third of the county, most of which is presently occupied by single family homes. They point out that under a 1966 grant of authority by the Maryland Legislature, zoning changes are up to the County Council and that Thrive only advocates policy for the Council to consider. That is, at best, disingenuous.

Having adopted Thrive as its policy are we to think the Council will then ignore its recommendations? Indeed, the Council has already requested zoning change recommendations from the county planning department and is considering rent controls as it elbows its way into your living room.

The Attainable Housing Strategies Initiative recommends changes to accommodate duplexes, triplexes, and other low-income housing. But that takes land and as noted, most land is presently zoned for single family homes.

For its first 200 years Montgomery County was largely un-zoned agricultural. It wasn’t until 1964 that the first land use plan - called Wedges and Corridors - was adopted, setting aside more than a third of the county for single family housing and enshrining the automobile to provide transportation. Notably, efforts are underway even now to replace the car’s freedom with the inflexibility of mass transit.

So, beware Mary. Your garden may grow prettily for now but that big backyard you prize may not fare as well unless you plant a few hardy Republicans among the Council’s Democrat weeds.

By authority LD-15 PAC Gary Feateringham, Treasurer
Mary, Mary....

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