Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Rockville construction update: Nada (Photos)

Construction is nearing completion at Nada, the new Mexican restaurant opening at Pike & Rose. Blade signs that face pedestrians walking along Grand Park and Rose Avenues have just been installed, as well. The restaurant is at the corner of both streets, in The Henri apartment building.

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Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Beer & wine store close to opening at The Galvan on Rockville Pike

The sign is up and lit, but the name has changed. We've been waiting months for the debut of The Beer Junction in the ground floor of the Galvan at Twinbrook development at 1800-D Rockville Pike. Now workers are putting the finishing touches on the interior, where seating and tables are also in place. The store will now be called The Rockville Pike Craft Beer & Wine.
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Monday, October 29, 2018

Rockville Aldi to open Thursday

Rockville lost a grocery store this past weekend, but it's gaining one later this week. Aldi will open in the former hhgregg/Circuit City building in the Congressional North shopping center on Rockville Pike this Thursday, November 1, 2018 at 8:00 AM.

This is the first Aldi store in Rockville. As you can see, the store's team has already been at work stocking the shelves. Get your quarters ready for a Supermarket Sweep this Thursday.

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Friday, October 26, 2018

Dawson's Market to close this weekend

The last-ditch effort to save Dawson's Market has failed. Dawson's owner now plans to close as scheduled October 27. The only good news is that everything in the store will be 50% off now.

Rockville Sister City Corporation discussion scheduled for Monday worksession

The relationship between the Rockville Sister City Corporation and the Mayor and Council will be discussed at a worksession this Monday night, October 29, 2018 at 7:00 PM at City Hall. Councilmember Mark Pierzchala had sought the discussion to clarify the roles of the parties, such as who decides when to terminate an existing sister city relationship, or designate a new one. Perhaps we'll know more about exactly why the topic is being brought up by the end of Monday's worksession.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Construction walls come down at Nada at Pike & Rose (Photos)

The opening of Nada this fall at Pike & Rose is perhaps the most-anticipated restaurant opening in Montgomery County at the moment. Construction has been proceeding behind walls at the corner of Grand Park and Rose Avenues. Now those walls have come down, and we are getting our first look at the tacos & cocktails eatery.

Interior design has been focused on the fine details for the Ohio chain's first East Coast location. Hand-picked fabrics on the walls, light fixtures stitched in "Nada Red," and handmade pottery light fixtures from Kentucky are among the design touches. A tile design covers the lower exterior facade. The real surprise when the walls came down? A recessed corner at the restaurant entrance creates a covered space just outside the doors.

Recessed corner at restaurant entrance

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Rockville man arrested in Twinbrook rape

Montgomery County police have arrested a suspect in the alleged rape of a teenage girl near the Twinbrook Metro station Monday night. Malachi Peter Raymond, 21, of Autumn Wind Way in Rockville, has been charged with the second-degree rape of a 17-year-old female.

Detectives say Raymond began conversing with the girl when they were both on a Metrobus sometime before 6:30 PM Monday evening. When the bus arrived at Twinbrook Metro station, Raymond and the girl walked to a parking garage at 5701 Fishers Lane. In a sixth-level stairwell of the garage, Raymond attempted to kiss the girl, and she rebuffed his advances, police say. Raymond then allegedly raped the victim. Afterword, detectives say, he then walked the victim back to the Metro station.
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Raymond was identified by the victim and surveillance camera footage. He was arrested last night at his home without incident.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

MoCo Council to hear testimony on proposed outdoor dining smoking ban today

The Montgomery County Council will hear testimony on Bill 35-18 today at 1:30 PM, a new law that would forbid smoking and vaping in all outdoor dining areas in the County. A similar bill was already passed by the City of Rockville.

Some Rockville restaurateurs spoke out against the city law at the time. One reason opposition was more vocal in that case, was that the city ban did not apply to direct dining competitors outside of the city limits.
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Rockville resident Adam Zimmerman, who spearheaded the Rockville ban effort, is also supporting the proposed County law. In an advance copy of his testimony, Zimmerman notes that restaurant revenues increased 7% in Montgomery County in the six months after the Council passed its indoor smoking ban that applied to restaurants in 2003. He says Montgomery would join 300 municipalities and 4 states which have banned smoking in outdoor dining areas.

Monday, October 22, 2018

Dawson's Market having second thoughts on closing

In a last-minute twist to a story that has shaken confidence in the future of Rockville Town Square, retail anchor Dawson's Market is having second thoughts about its closure announcement earlier this month. The market was on the way out at the end of the month until just days ago, when the owner announced a last-ditch effort to save the business.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to seek donations from the community to keep the market in business. In four days, the page has raised $16,571 of its $100,000 goal. However, at this rate, they will not reach that goal by October 27, the previously-announced closure date for the store. Perhaps the rate of donations will pick up as word spreads around town.

Owner Bart Yablonsky says he will not draw from the funds if he cannot reach a new lease agreement with landlord Federal Realty. Donors can get rewards such as a "I Saved Dawson's" t-shirt.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Japong Bakery to open today in Rockville

Rockville's newest bakery will open today in the Ritchie Center. Japong Bakery will open at 9:00 AM this morning at 785 Rockville Pike, and close at 8:30 PM tonight. Customers will enjoy free samples at the bakery today. There will also be a grand opening special: Buy two of their freshly-baked Pineapple Buns, and get one free.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Drybar to open in Rockville

Drybar will round out the retail spaces in the ground floor of the Canopy by Hilton hotel at Pike & Rose. The popular blowout salon will open at 11861 Grand Park Avenue next spring. Their 1705 SF space will be next to Sunday Morning Bakehouse and UNIQLO.

This will be only the fifth Drybar in the D.C. area. Drybar pioneered the trend of having adult beverages at salons, which required an update to Montgomery County and Maryland's archaic liquor laws, which became known as "the Drybar bill" when it passed in Annapolis.

Photos courtesy Drybar

Kusshi to hold soft opening next week in Rockville

Be one of the first to experience Kusshi at Pike & Rose when they hold their soft opening next week. The Japanese restaurant will open to the public this Monday, October 22, 2018 at 11:00 AM. Soft opening hours will continue through 10:00 PM on October 25.

Kusshi is named after the "ultimate" Japanese oyster, and that namesake delicacy will be available on the menu. Sushi is also on the menu, along with other Japanese specialties, sake and cocktails. Food will be 40% off during the soft opening.

The restaurant is located at 11826 Trade Street - park in the Trade Street garage, and you can walk right out onto the plaza in front of Kusshi from the elevator.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Hoeber questions Trone spending in congressional race

Republican Amie Hoeber is questioning the spending of her Democratic opponent, David Trone, in the 6th Congressional District race. Hoeber accuses Trone of trying to buy the U.S. Congressional seat, with his expenditures believed to be nearing sixteen million dollars.

Hoeber also noted that Trone has donated $2500 to the GOP candidate for governor in Pennsylvania.  "He has stated this election will be 'Decided by Western Pennsylvania,'" Hoeber said Tuesday, "but I still think it will be decided by Western Maryland."

Trone has recently returned to the campaign trail and the airwaves following successful treatment for cancer.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Rockville Mayor & Council vote to return public right-of-way to private landowner

Rockville's Mayor & Council voted unanimously last night to abandon a right-of-way easement at 2131 Veirs Mill Road. Running parallel to the busy route, the easement could have been a future service road, but is now returned to the landowner for private development.

The easement was granted to the city in 1976 for use as a public street or service road. Abandonment of the property comes just as Montgomery County is threatening to demolish dozens of homes and businesses along Veirs Mill to create a wider right-of-way for a $10 billion Bus Rapid Transit boondoggle, and additional bike and pedestrian facilities. That made the idea of handing back a significant piece of property already in public possession an intriguing one at this time.

City staff told the Mayor and Council that no public comment on the abandonment proposal was received.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Rockville Town Square ice rink under construction (Photos)

Temperatures below 50 degrees over the weekend may have visitors to Rockville Town Square in the mindset for winter. The square's ice rink is under construction now, coincidentally. Where's a Zamboni when you need one?

Friday, October 12, 2018

Rockville construction update: Aldi (Photos)

As the future of groceries implodes at Rockville Town Square, Rockville's newest grocery store - Aldi - continues to be constructed at Congressional North on Rockville Pike. This used to be Circuit City years ago. Hard to imagine this store will open by year's end as promised, but stay tuned.