In the controversy over future redevelopment of downtown Silver Spring, some have suggested that the Montgomery County Council's only choice was between citizen activists and developers. That is wrong. There are many citizens, activists and nonactivists, who support the county council's decision to set the job ceiling at 11,250 in order to allow the needed mix of retail, offices, restaurants and housing, including the group of citizens who formed PROGRESS on Sept. 27. Nearly 2,000 letters and phone calls were made and sent to the county council in support of a Moore-Rouse-type retail project with two department stores such as Macy's and Nordstrom's and in support of a 11,000 to 11,500 job ceiling
PROGRESS sees many potential benefits to the community from such a Moore-Rouse retail project. Department stores provide the kind of retail that everyone needs for everyday living; night and weekend life in downtown Silver Spring will be more stimulating and safer; and nearby single-family homes will be more desirable and hence more valuable. Also, the resulting attractive retail heart in Silver Spring will encourage downtown residential development handy to the Metro and buses to other parts of the Washington area.
We are looking forward to working with all parties (government, the private sector and fellow citizens) to see that the public benefits to the maximum extent possible from Silver Spring renewal, while keeping traffic manageable. We are confident this can and will be done.
BETSY TAYLOR Chairman of PROGRESS Silver Spring