Monday, June 2, 2008

east county in review: wikis, picnics, and block parties

WHAT'S UP THE PIKE: Local twins fail to win Tila Tequila's heart on Shot at Love; Study shows increasing gap between income, housing costs in East County; MTA predicts 68,000 daily riders on Purple Line.

Hey! Just Up The Pike is back from a week of digging holes, swinging hammers and swilling hand-grenades in New Orleans, and I'm pleasantly surprised to find out I missed out on quite a lot while I was gone. While I'm catching up, here's a look at what's happening in East County this week:

District 4 Wiki, a new user-generated website created by local activists Eileena York and Thomas Hardman, will be holding its first community meeting this Thursday at the Long and Foster in Burtonsville. The website, which runs on the same software as the encyclopedia Wikipedia, aims to create a resource for community information and dialogue between residents, business owners and elected officials.

Former Councilmember Marilyn Praisner will see her name on the Fairland Library and adjacent Fairland Recreation Center after a renaming ceremony Saturday at 11 a.m. The complex, located on Old Columbia Pike in Burtonsville, will be dedicated as the Marilyn J. Praisner Center. Newly sworn in Councilmember Don Praisner, who won a special election to succeed his wife after she passed away in February, will make one of his first public appearances at the event.

IMPACT Silver Spring, which helps to develop and strengthen cross-cultural ties in the Downcounty, will be holding a community picnic for local residents Saturday from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Takoma-Piney Branch Local Park in Takoma Park. Some grilling will take place, but picnickers are encouraged to bring their own food and blankets.

A ground-breaking ceremony for the new Mid-County Community Recreation Center (pictured) will take place Saturday at 1 p.m. The new facility, on Queensguard Road in Layhill, will have 25,000 square feet of recreational and activity space and is expected to open in 2009.

Urging its residents to "break out" of the neighborhood's many new apartment and condo towers, South Silver Spring holds its second-annual Block Party this Sunday from 11 to 5 p.m. The event will feature fifteen live bands, food from nine local restaurants, and over eighty vendor stands along Kennett Street in South Silver Spring.


Thomas Hardman said...

Thanks again for more information and a kindly plug, Dan. You know, you too are certainly welcome to pop in and "make some page". In fact, I'd be honored if you would adapt some of the information in the articles you did on Briggs Chaney into the wiki format.

I've sent out e-mails to most of the candidates in the last election hoping that they might take the time and expend the energy to give us their insight on their own communities.

As a bit of an aside, I was at a multi-agency and semi-informal mini-event at Peppertree Farm a week ago, where the Departments of Recreation and Police had set up some tables and were dispensing handouts and information regarding after-school and summertime activities and programs. And who should show up but Mark Fennel! It seems he lives there in Peppertree Farms, and I'm honestly surprised that he didn't know about the Mid-County Neighborhood Initiative which has been trying to promote public activism against crime in the corridor from Wheaton Central Business District right up to the southern side of Leisure World. Peppertree Farm is one of the hardest-hit places, though the new management seems to be turning it around a bit. His involvement, as a resident, could help that much more.

Anonymous said...

There is no way they are going to get 68,000 riders on a trolley line that serves exiting transit lines and has no parking capacity. If they spent $2billion on new garages, they could bring half a million new riders to Metro. that sounds like a better deal to me

Anonymous said...

Sanjay: It's nice that you think you know more than the planners. Are you also predicting $2 gas?

Thomas Hardman said...

The fact is, nobody is capable of even reacting in a timely manner to the rise in petroleum costs.

How exactly they could be expected to plan for it, I couldn't say, though I suppose with a certain degree of snideness I have to admit that I first saw "Mad Max" about 25 years ago.

Nobody has done any of the things that would have made perfect sense in planning, if they'd had the least concept of Futurism.

For example: Why has Veirs Mill Road never been levelled out? Why are there so many stopsigns and signals at the bottom of hills rather than at the top, forcing people to burn extra fuel rather than coasting and conserving momentum? Why do the ICC and the proposed Montrose Parkway East have no provisions for light-rail or other comparable mass-transit? Why doesn't the Red Line go all of the way to Brookeville and Lake Forest Mall?

Did these people really expect that we'd never run out of oil, or did they expect the Cold War to nuke us all into oblivion long before all of the oil could be used? Tough call. But in the modern day they do at least understand one thing: whether or not we have oil, we will have nuclear electrical power. People will increasingly forced to depend on that, and it's best used as light rail when what you need is to get crowds of people from one part of an urban area to another. The suburbs are pretty much doomed, globally, and failure to recognize that will lead to calamities.