Wednesday, February 24, 2010

another afternoon on ellsworth

It was nice to spend an afternoon in Downtown Silver Spring last weekend walking around and clearing my head right before sunset, when the light's nice for taking moody photos.

No Speed Bumps

What's missing here? If you said "speed bumps," you're right on. They were installed on Ellsworth Drive in 2007 for the obvious reason of traffic calming, despite the fact that Ellsworth today has a high volume of pedestrians that already should force attentive drivers to slow down. And, of course, it's usually closed to cars altogether on the weekends, though I didn't see anyone get mowed down when the street was left open last November.

It's likely that they were dinged up during snow plowing and will return soon, which is disappointing - there are already better ways to slow cars down on a street like this.

Skater Kids on Ellsworth, Feb. 2010 (1)

Kids are skating on Ellsworth Drive again! What does this mean? A return of the skater mob? A standoff between skaters and security guards? Or will adults inexplicably exasperated by the presence of skinny-jean-wearing-teenagers finally join the push for a downtown skatepark?

Civic Building, Feb. 2010

Progress on the Silver Spring Civic Building at Ellsworth and Fenton continues to press along. You can see the frame of the canopy over the new ice rink is almost completed, though we have yet to see the new Veterans' Plaza take form. It should all be done this summer.

M & T Bank Square

And over on Colesville Road, the block of shops between Georgia and Ramsey - recently renovated after a devastating fire four years ago - has been rechristened "M & T Bank Square," after the Baltimore-based bank on the corner. It was built in the 1920's as the Hale Building and renamed "Hale Center in marketing materials from the leasing agency.

Last year, Richard Layman from Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space complained that the renovation used "metal googaw things" to "update" the building. They are a little tacky - they tend to cover up the second-story windows and don't serve any purpose at all - but I hate to say they're beginning to grow on me. At the very least, it's nice to have the building occupied again. I still have yet to try Flippin' Pizza, though.


Silver Spring: Then and Again said...


The building on Colesville across from Discovery did NOT open in the 1920s as the "Hale Building." It opened in 1938 as the Walsh Motor Company.

Kim said...

I like the Flippin' Pizza OK. When I get the slice to go, sometimes the way they package it the cheese sticks to the top of the bag. So I'd rather eat in. Most of the time, honestly, I opt for Qdoba!

Melanie said...

Bring on the skater kids. All these Mr.Wilson (Dennis the Menise)
types need to calm down. Leave the kids alone!!!

Terry in Silver Spring said...

I figured the metal pieces were a nod to fitting in with the other buildings in DTSS with metal bits on the outside. It feels like a theme is emerging with the light colored brick or facades with matte metal parts.

Sk8ter Mom said...

Yeah, what Melanie said.

Skateboarding is not illegal on public streets in Montgomery County. Ellsworth Drive is a public street. That's why after years of skaters being harassed and kicked out of Ellsworth, the no-skateboarding signs were quiety removed (since there's no legal basis for prohibiting skateboarding there.)

And a couple of months ago a DTSS security guard admitted to me and a group of skaters that yes, we are allowed to skate on Ellsworth.