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67 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today at about 11AM I geared up my bicycle and went to the metro station. First of all, I live in a standard townhouse, that looks like this but is not mine. There's 10 identical units of 6 townhouses in this neighborhood:

NOTE: I didn't cover suburbia because it is not interesting and we all know what it looks like.

This is one of the first large buildings met on the way, Le Pavillion, now under renovation, to be known as Le Monterrey:

In the background is an apartment building under construction:

Next, I came upon a large parking lot, that is servicing what is called here Le Mid-Pike Plaza. From left to right is some office buildings, The Forvm apt. building, the three new buildings, The US Department of Nuclear Energy, and a standard apartment building.

Behind the stop sign is a sign for La Madeline - a French-themed cafe with expensive food.

Three newer buildings here. Not quite a microdistrict. They are built by a standard capitalist scheme. First came the building farthest back. People were happy that then got a clear skyline outside their windows. Then they built the second building. There was one skyline to see and the first building lost half of its appeal. Then they built the last building. The people of the second building were then unable to see the horizon from either side and were also constricted by the small amount of light. Basically, :knife: . Also, the Forvm is in the background. But that building is disgusting.

The department of nuclear energy, looks like a small copy of a wing of the Russian Academy of Sciences:

Standard apartment building:

This is what every sidewalk should look like:

A pseudo-microdistrict:

The dept once again:

After that I left my bike at that thing, took out the water bottle, and went to the metro. I'm lucky that it didn't get stolen because when I came back I realized that it wasn't even locked to anything - I put the lock around a metal thing that had a part where it could be taken out. My bike's the one on the right.

It costs $1.35 to get from my station to the Rockville station.

Trains here don't come very often, lol:

It's pretty creepy when you're all alone in a train car. I don't think that has happenned to me before:

On the Rockville Station platform. I had a pretty weird feeling as if I was in Russia. I am on a platform and there was something under construction.

Looks like I have to go there:

This is a pretty nice walkway they built in the 90's:

Main street - Rockville Pike:

City and Country government center. Our county has over 500 000 people in it, and its own congressional district. This is one of the buildings. I had a photo of the other one but it turned out crappy.

There's going to be some large event here for Memorial Day. It's not as much to remember Memorial Day as to have a celebration because it's a 3 day weekend. Good thing I didn't take my bike here because there's a lot of restrictions on all traffic.

Now I'm going to the pseudo-European walking district. Problem is, it's only a couple of blocks in size and is suited for the upper middle class because those apartments start at 400-500 thousand dollars. Only today some of the streets are closed because of the celebration.

A pseudo-Roman fountain:

The main square. On the right is the city library.

Narrow streets:

Escape tunnels:

There's streets...


... And corporate affiliates.

This is the only building I've seen in America up to now that had balconies finished in glass.

The development is most limited by its unreasonably large parking lots.

And the fact that from the back the buildings are not appealing at all.

The Regal Cinema and city and county government buildings:

The walkway shown previously:

Behind that bridge is regular suburbia. Nothing interesting.

Upgraded dumbbell tenement:

If you ever wanted to know:

The skyline doesn't look all that good from the Monterrey. :hmm:

Apparently they like Europeans or something:

If you ever wanted to know what a metro train looks like:

There was a hobo sleeping on the platform whose feet were swollen like balloons. A black girl and I asked if he needed to go to the hospital and if we should call 911, but he said that he was fine, got up, and went on the next train. :eek:

Anyway, I'm back in White Flint, relieved that my bike wasn't stolen.

A few more images of the surroundings.

A concentration camp for cars:

The Mariott hotel and conference center:

Another last view of the pseudo-microdistrict:

A commercial zone - office buildings:

My dad worked in this one until moving to another area(the company no longer exists):

Regional headquarters of Kaiser Permanente Insurance Company:

A highway that goes near my house. I use it to get home. There is a bike path on the right, but I use the road for now, as it's still under construction.

It will go toward White Flint:


391 Posts
Good pics, but awful descriptions. Also, FYI, the county has almost 1 million people, not "over 500,000" (probably more if you count the illegal immigrants). The "microdistrict" you kept describing is White Flint, which is slated to become the next big TOD spot in the county. Over the last 10 years or so, it has been growing up slowly. When things really get moving it will be quite impressive, will have the county's tallest building(s), and is especially important being next to a Metro station.

Downtown Rockville, with all the "pseudo-s" you kept referring to, it should be mentioned, is just getting finished with their town center redevelopment--everyone in the country should be looking at this development with envy for ideas for redevelopment or mixed-use centers that are built at the same time. I'm not a huge fan of Rockville as a whole but the variation in architecture, density, and arrangement of buildings, art fixtures, and parks in the town center development is definitely a marvel of planning. It is especially impressive that the library is being used as the anchor tenant.

518 Posts
Most of your early pictures around White Flint are in fact North Bethesda, Maryland and not Rockville. I like that you photographed this oft overlooked area, but most of your photos/descriptions are far from flattering. North Bethesda is undergoing what may possibly be the largest construction boom in Maryland. North Bethesda Town Center is a $850 million dollar project featuring 1,350 residential units. White Flint Crossing may end up being a 450 foot tower, making it the tallest in Maryland. Canyon Ranch may possibly go ahead with it's plans to build it's exclusive spa in North Bethesda. Maryland's largest company, Lockheed Martin, and many of its other large companies are headquartered in North Bethesda (Marriot International, Host Marriot, Coventry Healthcare are all headquartered in North Bethesda, not Bethesda). You missed photographing North Bethesda's Strathmore Music Hall, where Luciano Pavarotti sang last month and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra plays at regularly as it's second home.

With this handle or another, I promise to post a complete photothread of Southwest Montgomery County.

518 Posts
I don't think 450 would be the tallest in MD. And I noticed that the pics were in N. Bethesda, but I've heard Rockville used interchangably w/ that area many times.
That's right. What I meant to say was that 450' would make it the tallest building in Washington (not counting the Washington Monument) and the tallest building in Maryland outside of the city of Baltimore. As it is currently approved, the building will 24 stories, 289' to the top of the highest residential floor plus 2-4 mechanical floors putting it at at least 310'.

Many people do refer to this area as Rockville, but that is changing. The name North Bethesda is seemingly more fashionable and almost all of the area's new buildings are adopting the address "North Bethesda." The population of North Bethesda is exploding. I would be surprised if it didn't pass 45,000 people, if not 50,000 people by the next census. I would also be surprised if it didn't pass Bethesda in density.

1,229 Posts
So whats is new is Downtown Rockville? Excavation for Rockville Metro Plaza II is in occuring and selective demolition is being done for the Judicial Center Annex.

1,229 Posts
Downtown Rockville Update Blurbs

Tower crane for Rockville Metro Plaza II is up and swinging.

Excavation continues for the Judicial Center Annex.

The new Rockville City Police Headquarters is taking shape. The structural steel has been completed. The facade is nearly complete and interior work continues.
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