Showing posts with label Public Works. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Public Works. Show all posts

Monday, July 18, 2022

Rockville celebrates high-pressure infrastructure milestone

A public works project nearly fifteen years in the making is finally crossing the finish line in the City of Rockville. Susan Hoffmann was mayor when the city began replacing its low-flow fire hydrants, which were considered inadequate for fire safety needs. Sixty-seven hydrants were determined to have water flow rates of under 500 gallons per minute, an insufficient amount of water pressure for fire-extinguishing needs. The last hydrant was on Beall Avenue, where city officials and public works employees gathered to celebrate the milestone.

The hydrant upgrades were only part of a larger water system project that is expected to go on until 2108. It will take that long to replace every mile of pipe in the city's water system, which is the project goal. Since 2008, the city has already replaced 22 miles of water main pipe. “This last hydrant being removed out of the city’s system should be highlighted as an achievement and a testament to the Mayor and Council funding the water main rehab program,” John W. Hollida, the city’s engineering supervisor for capital projects, said in a statement.

Photos courtesy City of Rockville

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

East Rockville sewer improvements scheduled to begin

Pipes and manholes along several streets in East Rockville will be replaced starting this month. The work is expected to begin in Maryvale Park near Taylor Avenue, and end at the intersection of East
Middle Lane and Monroe Street. Additional streets that will be affected are Hungerford Drive, Park
Road, North Stonestreet Avenue, Grandin Avenue, Highland Avenue, South Horners
Lane, Seth Place, and Charles Street.

If you are in that area, you can expect temporary road closures, on-street parking restrictions and
construction noise. But water service will not be affected.

The project is expected to be completed in about a year, with each of the above streets requiring four to eight weeks of work apiece.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

First Street Bridge to be replaced in Rockville

The City of Rockville is preparing to replace the First Street Bridge in East Rockville. Expected to begin last fall, the nearly $1.5 million dollar project has been delayed. The replacement was recommended after an inspection of the bridge by a city consultant in 2012.

As an added benefit to the community, a sidewalk will be constructed on the east side of First Street from Lynn Court to the First Street spur road as part of the project. The affected portion of First Street will be closed to traffic during the construction.

Residents can attend a public meeting tomorrow night, October 1, 2015, from 6:30-7:30 PM, at the somewhat unusual location of the First Street entrance to Maryvale Park.

Photo courtesy Rockville Department of Public Works

Friday, October 24, 2014


Watts Branch Parkway reopened yesterday, after the Rockville Public Works Department completed repairs of a broken water main. A portion of the road had been closed since October 15.

A 40-year-old pipe was the culprit, according to the department. During the work, Verizon and Washington Gas also made minor repairs to its systems affected by the water main break.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


A water main break will keep Watts Branch Parkway closed between Hurley Avenue and Ingleside Court for up to several days. No customers are without water at this time, says the City of Rockville Public Works Department, which is currently repairing the break. Running cold water will help flush any discoloration of water away, they say. Should air become trapped in your pipes, they suggest slowly turning on all faucets in your home, starting on the highest floor and working downward.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


A change in Rockville policy could give the city's Public Works Director broader, but more defined, authority to determine parking and - in practice - throughput on roads in Business Districts. Some on the Montgomery County Council have sought similar power to slow down traffic, but in many cases those county roads are actually controlled by the State Highway Administration.

Part of an increasingly nationwide effort to reduce speeds, the objective is not always purely about public safety. For some, it is sincerely a safety or business development issue. A few proponents are part of the "war on cars," who seek to make driving as painful as possible, in the hopes of forcing drivers to "get out of their cars," and use public transit. Others include developers seeking to maximize development potential of properties along busy roads and highways, such as Rockville Pike. Plans for outdoor cafes on the curbside of roads where cars rush by have, understandably, sounded quite preposterous. Seeking to lower the embarrassment level for themselves, many have seized upon the idea of taking control of those roads, and forcing traffic to slow to 25 MPH (or even 10 MPH, in New York City). That concept is specifically being floated for state roads in the White Flint area, as well as for parts of Georgia Avenue, to name a few.

One Rockville street targeted by the potential new policy is N. Washington Street. Under the proposed policy, it could become a two-lane road with street parking. Should N. Washington Street become a 2-lane crawlspace like Maryland Avenue? A potential problem, which of course is the source of much traffic on N. Washington, is that it functions as a bypass or parallel route for MD 355.  It is also an alternative route to reaching parts of the town center area. Snarled capacity on N. Washington could have a direct and negative effect on 355 traffic.

Public Works Director Craig Simoneau told the Mayor and Council Monday evening that the new policy would actually better define his existing powers to make road classification and parking decisions. Mayor Bridget Newton expressed concern that these decisions not be removed from the discretion of the city's elected officials. Simoneau argued that he currently possesses more leeway on these matters, and that a new policy would clarify his authority.