Archive for the ‘Takoma Park’ Category

Takoma Park Residents: Concerns About Project

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

Some Takoma Park residents voiced concerns that a redevelopment plan could funnel more traffic to residential neighborhoods during a neighborhood meeting Thursday night.

Residents of Takoma Park’s Ward 6 said they are worried that the proposed Takoma-Langley Crossroads Sector Plan and a new light rail line, which would create two Metro stops on University Boulevard, would cause problems.

Takoma Park Council member Frederick Schultz, who represents Ward 6, said the redevelopment plan calls for more retail space, and that would generate more movement.

“We don’t want the neighborhood to be used as a cut-through area,” Schultz said, of the area near the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and University Boulevard.

The Takoma-Langley Crossroads Sector Plan was created by Montgomery County planners in anticipation of the construction of the Purple Line, a light rail system that will run from New Carrollton to Bethesda.

The sector plan, which hasn’t yet been voted on by the Montgomery County Council, would include rezoning of about 55 acres into a CR Zone, which allows a mixed use for residential, commercial and office purposes. The plan would put the highest density commercial area close to the Purple Line Metro stations and a proposed $12 million transit center, in the northwest corner of the University Boulevard and New Hampshire Avenue intersection.

The center would provide a central location for the various bus routes that serve the area and will include a shelter and restrooms, according to the Maryland Transit Administration’s website.

Montgomery County’s development plan also calls for creating new streets, improving New Hampshire Avenue and University Boulevard and building sidewalks and bike paths to encourage walking and biking as means of transportation.

At the end of the meeting Ilona Blanchard, community development coordinator for Takoma Park, proposed scheduling a meeting every two weeks to include community input before the next County Council hearing on the proposal in May.

–By Maryland Newsline’s Maite Fernandez

Police Officer Shot in Takoma Pk. Bank Robbery

Friday, January 28th, 2011

PALMER PARK, Md. – A Prince George’s County police officer was shot this morning after an armed man took hostages at a Takoma Park bank.

The suspect, whose name has not yet been released, was shot and killed by police as he left the Capital One bank at the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and University Boulevard with a female hostage. The hostage, whose name was not released, was “shaken,” but otherwise unhurt, Prince George’s County police said.

The officer who was shot has not been identified by police. He suffered minor injuries and was taken to a local hospital, said Prince George’s County Police Lt. Col. Gary Cunningham.

Cunningham declined to offer details about the officer’s condition.

Details of the shooting were unclear, but Prince George’s police spokeswoman Michelle Reedy said it’s a possibility the officer was accidentally shot by another officer when responding to the bank robbery. She did not have any other specific details shortly after noon Friday.

The attempted bank robbery occurred the same morning Prince George’s police planned to announce the closure of their fifth case related to the county’s spate of murders this month.

Prince George’s police arrested a suspect in the Jan. 8 killing of Alejandro Marcos Diaz Vasquez, 30, of the 7900 block of 15th Avenue in Langley Park, Md.

Police said a Hyattsville 16-year-old confessed Jan. 24 to stabbing
Vasquez in the 1400 block of University Boulevard. The teen suspect is being charged as a
juvenile with first- and second-degree murder.

Cunningham said the killing does not appear to be gang related, and that
there is no apparent relationship between the suspect and victim. He
said a motive has not been established because the suspect has provided
“conflicting stories.”

“He did admit to stabbing him,” Cunningham said.

Police said they did not know if the teen suspect had legal representation.

Prince George’s County was plagued by 12 criminal homicides in 13 days
at the start of 2011. Two murders have occurred since, with the last coming
Monday afternoon when police found Mckinney Antonio White Jr., 34, dead
in the 5700 block of Silver Hill Road in District Heights.

The pace of homicides has slowed in recent days.

“Obviously we’ve done some things to reduce the rate,” Cunningham said. “The
first 12 days we had 12 homicides. The last two weeks that number is
significantly reduced. So … we hope the trend continues.”

–By Maryland Newsline’s Alexander Pyles