From the RCHCA Officers

RCHCA Meeting: Monday, October 17

By | Board Correspondence, From the RCHCA Officers, Meetings, RCHCA Biz | No Comments

Please find below a draft agenda for our Fall RCHCA meeting, which will take place at 7:30 PM on Monday, October 17th, at Grace Episcopal Day School.

Please let any Board member know if you have additional agenda item(s). Thank you.

With best regards,
Jim P.

P.S. If you haven’t yet, please consider paying your RCHCA $40 dues for the year. You may pay them online (via <>), in person at the meeting, or by sending a check payable to “RCHCA” to our Treasurer, Ms. Maria Marzullo, at 9801 East Bexhill Drive, Kensington, MD 20895. Your dues are the only source of support for the Association’s activities that seek to preserve and enhance your quality of life in our neighborhood.


Agenda for RCHCA meeting on 17 October 2016

1. Crime & safety
– recent incidents
– tips from the police

2. Traffic & pedestrian safety
– recent incidents
– how to get the County to trim branches to reveal hidden signage
– sidewalk update
– adding crosswalks(s)?
– a walkable route to Forest Glen Metro via Capitol View / Metropolitan Avenue?
– permit parking?

3. Middle School construction update
– stormwater management
– noise concerns
– lighting concerns
– concrete spill into Silver Creek

4. Silver Creek update

5. Gas/Sewer/Water updates

6. Salt Barn update.

7. Update on Rock Creek Hills Covenants

8. RCHCA party on October 30th!
– starting 3:30 PM
– costume parade, burgers, etc.
– volunteers needed

9. Other business.

fyi: a letter from MCPS, addressing stormwater concerns

By | B-CC Middle School / RCH Park, Board Correspondence, From the RCHCA Officers | No Comments

Dear neighbors,

Monthly onsite meetings continue between representatives of your RCHCA Board, Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS), & Dustin Construction, to provide a forum for communication during construction of the new middle school.

At this month’s meeting, we received a letter from MCPS regarding last month’s stormwater concerns. You can see the letter (as the 3rd & 4th pages of the document) posted at dropbox at <>.

With best regards,
Jim Pekar
President, RCHCA

Kensington Water Main Replacement Mtg Recap

By | From the RCHCA Officers | No Comments

Dear neighbors,

Here is a report on last Thursday evening’s water main meeting, as prepared by Rick Bond & myself:

WSSC has hired EBA Engineering, Inc., to design the replacement of about three miles of water mains in our neighborhood (as specified in the map & address list shared earlier). These mains are 60-80 years old, and are the cause of our not infrequent “brown water” incidents. The new mains will have a lifespan in excess of 100 years.

Work is scheduled to begin in Spring of 2017, and to end in Spring of 2019. Normally scheduled work will take place between 8 AM and 4 PM, Monday through Friday – there may be some occasions when work must be conducted in “off hours”.

During construction, temporary water service will be provided. Water shutdown periods of up to 8 hours may take place; if longer shutdowns are required, then bottled water will be provided to the affected homes. 48 hours advance notice will be provided of any shutdowns. They provided advice regarding dealing with “brown water” (which may happen off and on during the work) – running the cold-water bathtub tap in the highest bathroom to clear “brown” is advised, as tub facets, unlike sink facets, do not have strainer filters that can get clogged.

We can sign up now for mobile notification of relevant shutdowns via the WSSC Customer Notification System link at

No parking will be permitted on streets with “active” construction. All roads will be accessible at all times, however there may be temporary closures or delays, e.g., when bringing in big pipes.

New water mains will be placed under the pavement (not on county rights-of-way contiguous with front lawns, where some mains are now located). “Service lines” from the mains to homes will be replaced – either to the home (if you have a water meter inside your home – which is rare), or to the “curb box” (which is a circular piece, about 6″ in diameter). Older houses may have a galvanized pipe running from the curb box to the home; we were advised to consult a plumber (always best to get multiple bids) regarding updating that with copper pipe. The service life of those galvanized lines, like the service life of the original water mains, is over; they may leak, and it’s less expensive to replace the pipe before having to pay a surprise bill for a big water leak that you didn’t know about until you got your three-month water bill.

Some trees will be taken down where the trees compromise the piping; we are awaiting an estimate of how many.

After the work is done, affected roads will be resurfaced, and yards restored. Work will be done in 3-4 “phases,” each of which must be substantially complete, before the contractor moves on to the next phase.

The WSSC representatives were very courteous, willing to answer questions, and to work with our community. Project staff are:
Wanpin Lee – Project Manager – phone 301-206-8532
Kevin Lethbridge – Construction Manager – phone 301-206-7339
Stephen Billingsley – Contract Manager – phone 301-206-7363
Brandon Stewart – Customer Advocate – phone 301-642-1712
Joseph Danquah – Design Engineer – phone 240-547-1127

As the time grows closer to construction, they will be willing to have another meeting with the community.

With best regards,
Jim Pekar
President, RCHCA

P.S. Here’s one of our neighborhood’s youngest residents, with her mother, early Friday:

Notice of WSSC Community Meeting July 21, 2016

By | From the RCHCA Officers, Meetings, Neighborhood Notices, RCHCA Biz | No Comments

Dear neighbors,

Please see forwarded email below.
As our listserv does not handle attachments, I’ve put the two files provided – a list of addresses, and a map – on dropbox, where you can find  them at:

With best regards,
Jim P.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Joseph Danquah <>
Date: Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 3:02 PM
Subject: RE: Kensington Water Main Replacement- Community Meeting July 21 ,
To: Jim Pekar <>
Cc: “Lee, Wanpin” <>, Matthew Pasowicz <>, Mary Mell <>


Attached, you will find the list of homes/properties that will be affected by Kensington Water Main replacement work including Work area map . We would like to know if *Rock Creek Hills Citizens’ Association* will be able to communicate with residents on our behalf to attend community meeting on July 21, 2016. We prefer it this way because associations know their communities better and are able to communicate with them the way they know their communities. Below, I have provided an invitation message to the residents. Please let me know if it can be done.


*Message of invitation to residents*:

Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) invites you to a Community Meeting on Thursday, *July 21, 2016 from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm* at the *Kensington Park Retirement Community *(*3620 Littledale Rd, Kensington, MD 20895*). The Community meeting is being held to provide an overview of the water main replacement project planned for the Kensington neighborhood, and present you with an opportunity to ask questions. For more information or questions, please call the WSSC at *301-206-8532 * and speak *to
Ms. Wanpin Lee.*

*Joseph Danquah, PE*| Project Manager

EBA Engineering, Inc.

*d.* 240.547.1127 | *c.* 410.940.8918 |

14405 Laurel Place, Suite 300 | Laurel, MD 20707 |

Kensington Parkway Water Main Replacement

By | From the RCHCA Officers | No Comments

Dear neighbors,

We’ve been contacted by EBA Engineering, contractors for WSSC, about plans to replace water mains in our neighborhood.

They’re planning to hold a community meeting to present and discuss this project. The meeting is tentatively scheduled for the 21st of July.

They’ve provided a map showing the affected areas. You can see the document at:

I will keep you updated as we hear more from EBA.

With best regards,
Jim Pekar
President, Rock Creek Hills Citizens’ Association

Please Save the Date: RCHCA Meeting 7:30 PM Tuesday April 12th

By | From the RCHCA Officers, Meetings, Neighborhood Notices | No Comments

Dear neighbors,

The next meeting of the Rock Creek Hills Citizens’ Association will take place on Tuesday, April 12th, at 7:30 PM, in the large activity room of Grace Episcopal Day School, at 9411 Connecticut Ave.

Topics include:
– School construction update
– Pedestrian safety now & following opening of the new school in August 2017
– Street congestion & streetscape concerns following opening of the new school
– Aesthetic mitigation of impacts associated with the new school
– Update on boundary study (to determine which elementary schools feed into the new middle school)
– Update on WSSC work
– Update on neighborhood signage
– Update on covenants
– Update on Villages of Kensington
– RCHCA budget update
– Election of officers
– Other business

Please let any Board member know if you have other topics for discussion at the meeting.

A full written notice of the meeting will be mailed to all households in Rock Creek Hills, and distributed via email to this listserv.

With best regards,
Jim Pekar,
RCHCA President

Notes from B-CC Middle School # 2 – First Construction Meeting – 02/03/2016

By | B-CC Middle School / RCH Park, From the RCHCA Officers | No Comments

Hello Rock Creek Hills Neighbors,

Last Wednesday, February 3’rd, 2016 at 7:30 AM:

· Jim Pekar, President Rock Creek Hills Citizens Association

· Rick Bond, A.I.A., a Rock Creek Hills Resident Architect with experience in large facilities construction

· Hill Carter, Vice-President Rock Creek Hills Citizens Association

Met with Seth Adams, Director, Division of Construction of Montgomery County Public Schools, Ray Marhamati MCPS Project Manager for B-CC Middle School #2, and the leads from Dustin Construction for B-CC Middle School #2 at the construction site in Rock Creek Hills. This is the first of what is expected to be monthly meetings to help foster bi-directional communication between the residents of Rock Creek Hills and the firms constructing the new school. The meeting was both productive and informative.

Attached please find our combined notes in bullet-ized form:

· Dustin Construction is aiming for a 1 July 2017 major construction completion date.

· Some remaining work will be conducted while MCPS prepares for the school year.

· MCPS recognizes that, as a new school, this is a unique situation. The project originally had a 24 month duration, which has been subsequently reduced to 18 months.

· Meeting construction completion date is critical, and a 6 day work week has been included for the duration of the project (included in budget).

· Most of the excavation is complete, and truck hauling of dirt will be minimal in the future.

· Funding for the asbestos removal and disposal will come from project contingencies, and will not increase total cost. They acknowledged that communication regarding this issue could have been better, and believe that these meetings will help.

· Dustin Construction is aware of the issue of the overly early start time on the Martin Luther King holiday and stated this should not happen again.

· The designated construction route for construction vehicles is from Connecticut Avenue down Saul Road

o No school construction trucks should be driving through RCH neighborhood streets

· All early morning truck deliveries are supposed to be queued up in a shopping center parking lot, in anticipation of the approved opening times. No trucks are allowed on Saul Road prior to 7:00.

· The last budget approval provided funding for the 12 classroom shell, the decorative finishes and metal railings on the retaining walls.

· There will be “hundreds” of vendors who will work on this project so some vendors may not be aware of the construction start time or designated construction route.

· Dustin started pouring cement last Tuesday and will be pouring cement daily until spring when the steel construction will start.

o Dustin stated they poured 1000 feet of cement last Tuesday alone

· In the spring Dustin will start drilling wells near the retirement home for the geo-exchange system (for the school HVAC System).

o This work will be noisy and Dustin is working on a noise abatement plans.

· The large piles of dirt on the field next to the Retirement Home are there intentionally as a sound barrier.

· MCPS stated they would post new renderings and other documents of the expanded school (with the add-on shell) on the MCPS web site within two weeks

o These documents may be posted under Division of Construction


· MCPS has no authority for sidewalks beyond the school site – this is a neighborhood issue that needs to be taken up with Montgomery County Department of Transportation (STEP Committee?)

· The Middle School #2 Boundary recommendation will be made by new Superintendent next fall. Focus will be on balancing “walking” access and diversity. Another issue is the fact that this school is not programmed to have a Spanish immersion program.

· The MCPS Board Of Education will make the final decision on boundaries for the new school by next fall and expects to have the new Superintendent in place by that time

· The first year of operation of the new school will be “unique” as they likely will not pull students out of Westland if they are already attending Westland.

· Construction Gate 1 is at the bottom of the hill; Construction Gate #2 is at the top of the hill.

We hope you find these notes helpful. Please let us know if you have any questions on the first construction meeting or any questions for the future monthly construction meetings.


Hill Carter