January 2010


Costco is considering opening a new store in Wheaton.  The proposal would be to use the old Hecht’s site to redevelop into the new Costco store.  Working with Westfield, the estimated cost would be $50M and Montgomery County is being asked to contribute $4M towards the construction costs.  The county is currently considering this proposal.

There has been a lot of discussion as to whether this would contribute to the overall plans for the Wheaton Redevelopment efforts or not.  Redevelopment efforts have stalled recently due to budget concerns and the overall economic outlook, but the recent closing of Safeway and plans to redeveloped that sight along with the possibility of Costco coming to Wheaton may just revitalize plans.

The county contribution is not without precedence, the county  contributed $6M to build a parking garage for the Macy’s expansion.

Costco locating in Wheaton would have the benefit of bringing thousands of shoppers to Wheaton who would otherwise shop at their current locations in Gaithersburg and Beltsville, help stabilize the mall and bring an estimated 475 jobs.

Rock Creek WoodsCharles M. Goodman (1906-1992) was an American architect who made a name with his mid-century modern/contemporary designs in suburban Washington, D.C. after World War II including homes in Wheaton.

Goodman designed the original National Airport outside of Washington, D.C.  After attending the Illinois Institute of Technology, Goodman came to D.C. in 1934 to work as the designing architect in the Public Buildings Administration.  He later served as head architect at the Treasury Department and the Air Transport Command.  After World War II he worked closely with Robert C. Davenport designing and site planning most of the Hollin Hills neighborhood in Alexandria, VA where his firm, Charles M. Goodman Associates designed over 14 models of houses.

Other projects included the 1964 Unitarian Church in Arlington, VA, his own residence, Goodman House, in 1954 on Quaker Lane in Alexandria.  In Reston, he designed a cluster of townhouses in the woods above Lake Anne known as Hickory Cluster.  He also did designs in Washington, D.C. at the Southwest Waterfront and just north of Fort McNair.

Goodman was famous for his contemporary designs, orienting homes at angles to the street instead of head-on, generous use of glass and limited removal of trees to maintain the wooded affect.

In Maryland, Goodman designed homes in Takoma Park and the Wheaton area of Silver Spring.

His 1951 development in Takoma Park was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004, as the Takoma Avenue Historic District.

Goodman developed two neighborhoods in Wheaton.

Hammond Wood Historic DistrictHis 1949-51 development off of Viers Mill Road known as Hammond Woods was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004, as the Hammond Wood Historic District.

His 1958-61 development off Connecticut Avenue known as Rock Creek Woods was listed on the National Register of Historic places and is known as the Rock Creek Woods Historic District.

These homes don’t resell often, but there has been a resurgence of interest since the late 90’s that has made them rather sought after homes.  Most real estate agents that know about them will always state in their remarks about the home that it is a “Goodman Contemporary”.

The Safeway in Wheaton at Georgia Avenue and Reedie Drive has closed for redevelopment.  The store originally opened in 1951.  See the ad announcing the store opening from the Washington Post on July 10, 1951.

The original plans were for Safeway to move as part of the development of the mixed-use Avalon at Wheaton community at the corner of Blueridge and Georgia Avenue.

That was before Safeway began working with developer Patriot Realty.  Now, the Wheaton Safeway, a joint venture between Patriot and Safeway, will more than double its 23,000 s.f. store while remaining at the same 11201 Georgia Avenue spot and will include 57,500 s.f. of retail, 140 underground parking spaces for Safeway customers, upwards of 500 apartment units on top of that, and additional 411 residential parking spaces. The Wheaton store will resemble DC’s 14-story City Vista Safeway at 5th & K Streets NW.

The group is looking for approvals as soon as possible for their Safeway project and would like to be under construction within the next 18 months.  We can hope that approval comes quickly so we don’t have to look at the current site any longer than necessary.

Hearthstone Village – Silver Spring, MD.

Built in 2001 by Beazer Homes, a community of approximately 100 Upscale Townhouse style Condominium units. They include multi-level, 2 Bedroom, 2 Bath, as well as, 3 Bedroom, 2.5 Bath units. All include a 1 car garage. Some units boast Jacuzzi tubs and separate showers. Some of the larger units include vaulted ceilings on the top level. A strong and involved home owners association helps make this community a wonderful choice for suburban living with easy access to all that the Washington Metro area has to offer.

One of the newest communities developed prior to the Wheaton Redevelopment Project, the community is on University Blvd just blocks from the Wheaton Metro and close to all the restaurants, shopping and recreation activities offered in the Wheaton area. Just a few miles north of downtown Silver Spring, Wheaton, is perfectly situated in the center of three major thoroughfares, and less than 2 miles north of the Capital Beltway. And with the added convenience and accessibility of Metrorail (Red Line) and Metrobus, Wheaton is the ideal location for more Redevelopment Projects.

To learn more about the Wheaton Redevelopment projects under construction or completed in the last few years, visit The Wheaton Redevelopment Project.

Other treasures of the Wheaton area include:

The Wheaton Library is situated at the corner of Georgia Ave and Arcola. The library offers a full range of library services, that includes a variety of programs for children ages 0 to 13, teen and adult programs, public computers, a language lab, a mini art gallery and a staff eager to serve the many users that visit the library daily. A popular attraction for adults and children is the vibrant aquarium teeming with fish and water plants. The present building was constructed in 1962 and was remodeled in 1985.The Wheaton Library is situated at the corner of Georgia Ave and Arcola. The library offers a full range of library services, that includes a variety of programs for children ages 0 to 13, teen and adult programs, public computers, a language lab, a mini art gallery and a staff eager to serve the many users that visit the library daily. A popular attraction for adults and children is the vibrant aquarium teeming with fish and water plants. The present building was constructed in 1962 and was remodeled in 1985.

Brookside Gardens is Montgomery County’s incomparable, award-winning 50-acre public display garden situated within Wheaton Regional Park. Included in the gardens are several distinct areas; azalea garden, rose garden, children’s garden, formal garden, fragrance garden, Japanese style garden and trial garden. The garden also features conservatories filled with changing seasonal displays, educational programs for children and adults, trips, special events, concerts, children’s day, art classes and exhibits, gift shops and special event rental facilities. A horticultural reference library is located in the airy Visitors Center. Admission is free.

Brookside Gardens’ mission, as a public garden, is to foster appreciation for the art of gardening and the science of horticulture through plant collections and displays, learning opportunities and special events.

Wheaton Regional Park is nestled in a forested area of Wheaton, Maryland. The park was established in 1960, incorporating several large parcels of land into one of Montgomery County’s finest and largest parks. Visitors can enjoy a variety of recreational and educational opportunities within its 536 acres.
Take a ride on the train, go horseback riding, have a picnic, go fishing, ice skate or play ball.