Friday, August 14, 2020

Montgomery County Public Schools not the top school system in Maryland, analysis says

Prominent data analysis firm Stacker has used hard numbers to determine the best school district in each state across America. Montgomery County Public Schools was not the winner.

Stacker says Howard County public schools are the best in the state. They determined this by reviewing statistics from the U.S. Department of Education, SAT/ACT scores, college readiness, teacher quality, and graduation rates.

MCPS has been in a steady decline since 2010, despite record spending on public schools over that same time. County elected officials have panicked this fall as a sizable number of parents transferred their MCPS students into private schools, and only a fraction of the anticipated number of new students materialized on the MCPS 2020-21 student roster.

Fallsgrove crime wave continues with another stolen car

Montgomery County police responded Wednesday to the report of a car being stolen in Fallsgrove, the fourth significant crime in the community since July 26. The vehicle was parked in a commercial parking lot in the 9400 block of Blackwell Road. It was stolen sometime Wednesday evening. Another car was stolen in Fallsgrove Sunday, and two armed robberies have occurred there in the last three weeks.

909 Rose is one of the DC area's few pandemic-ready office buildings

We've been hearing for months about how office buildings will have to be updated to adapt to the new abnormal of Covid-19, and potential future pandemics. But Federal Realty's new Class A office building at its Pike & Rose development in Rockville is one of the few pandemic-ready workspaces in the Washington, D.C. area.
909 Rose, located at 909 Rose Avenue, has several of the features landlords worldwide are considering already installed. These include a dedicated outdoor air system, which circulates 30% more fresh air through the building than required by code.
The building also has the Schindler touchless elevator PORT technology already built in. This eliminates the issue of high-touch elevator button surfaces, and potentially could be utilized to reduce the number of passengers aboard the elevator at one time, a second concern in Covid spread via elevators.
In addition to these rare features, the building also has open floor plates. This is essential at a time when office floorplans are being rethought, and physical separations between workers - including screens, cubicles or assigning employees their own office - are now considered ideal.
Windows are also designed for maximum natural light penetration, which might be an additional plus as direct sunlight is known to kill Covid-19, up to 90% in 34 minutes according to a recent study. And when internet reliability for devices and teleconferencing has never been of more concern, 909 Rose is Wired Silver certified, with a 100% uptime guarantee.
Considering that the building was complete when the pandemic struck, at too late a stage to have suddenly added such integral design elements, the features are a minor coup for Federal Realty in marketing the building. Federal Realty will have these advantages for its own employees, as its headquarters office is one of the already-signed tenants, along with OneDigital.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Urban Plates sets reopening date at Montgomery Mall

Urban Plates has been closed at Westfield Montgomery Mall in Bethesda since the nationwide coronavirus lockdown began this past spring. They've remained closed since Maryland and Montgomery County eased their restrictions to allow indoor dining with capacity restrictions. The good news is that they are now going to reopen this coming Monday, August 17, 2020.

Changes to operations will include PPE for all staff, social distancing, and food will now be brought to your table, instead of going through the cafeteria-style line the chain is known for. Their new hours will be Sunday – Thursday: 11:00 AM- 8:30 PM, and Friday - Saturday: 11:00 AM - 9:00 PM. Urban Plates is also featuring a summer special to celebrate their return, a $59.95 Ribs Family Meal, which includes four half racks of ribs, two large sides, and 4 slices of grilled rustic bread.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Twinbrook Laundromat construction continues in Rockville

The Twinbrook Laundromat looks closer to completion from the outside, but largely-covered windows and construction fencing make it difficult to gauge full extent of the progress inside. A sign has been installed on the front facade, and another one at the roadside.
They'll be competing with three other laundromats in the area, and it will be interesting to see what their operating hours are. The Aspen Hill Laundromat says it is open 24 hours, a rare throwback to the golden age of Aspen Hill, while the others tend to be closed between midnight and 6:00 AM.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Car stolen in Rockville

Fallsgrove crime spike

Rockville police responded to the report of a stolen car Sunday afternoon. The vehicle was taken from the parking lot of an apartment complex in the 300 block of Prettyman Drive in Fallsgrove sometime between Saturday night, and mid-afternoon Sunday. This was the third major crime in Fallsgrove in a two-week period.

Monday, August 10, 2020

Rockvillle funeral home-turned-retail center gets first tenant

A former funeral home converted into a two-level retail center at 1170 Rockville Pike finally has its first tenant, after sitting vacant for 19 months. The PRD Insurance Group has leased a space on the first floor. PRD currently is located further up the Pike at 842 Rockville Pike.