Thursday, January 31, 2019

Police identify one suspect in multiple Silver Spring, Wheaton CVS armed robberies

Montgomery County police detectives are pointing the finger at a single suspect in three different armed robberies of CVS Pharmacy stores across Silver Spring and Wheaton. They have released surveillance video and photos in hopes that the public can identify and locate the suspect.

The man is suspected in the following three holdups:

Sunday, October 21, 2018 around 9:55 PM, at the 2321 University Boulevard West CVS in Wheaton.

Sunday, November 18, 2018 near 10:10 PM, at the CVS at 10141 Colesville Road in Silver Spring.

Sunday, January 27, 2019 at approximately 9:30 PM, again at the Colesville Road store.

Anyone with information regarding the suspect or these armed robberies is asked to call the Major Crimes Division at 240-773-5070.  Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).  Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $10,000 for information provided to them that leads to an arrest in this case.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Forever 21 relocating at Wheaton Plaza

Forever 21 is moving at Wheaton Plaza. Their new location will be near JC Penney and the Dollar Store. The move will be made this spring.
Current Forever 21 location

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Renovations at Courtyard by Marriott in Silver Spring

The Courtyard by Marriott in downtown Silver Spring has been undergoing a complete renovation for almost two years now. At the moment, they are working on the Fenton Street entrance to the hotel.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Paisano's Pizza clearing out in Silver Spring

Paisano's Pizza has learned that Montgomery County is a difficult place to open restaurants in. Not long after their new Bethesda location abruptly closed, so did their new Silver Spring restaurant. Now the space is being cleared out. The chain made a rapid expansion in the region over the last two years, and it apparently didn't go very well in MoCo. Growth of the restaurant industry in Montgomery County lags behind most others in the region, and has stalled-out compared to jurisdictions like Frederick County, according to the Restaurant Association of Maryland.

Khyber Kitchen to open in Silver Spring

Khyber Kitchen is coming to 904 Bonifant Street in downtown Silver Spring. The restaurant's meats will be halal-certified. Kebabs will be a featured item on the menu.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Aspen Hill armed robbery suspect's photo released by police

The spike in violent crime continues to surge in Montgomery County. A taxi driver was the victim of an armed robbery in Aspen Hill on December 23 around 3:30 AM, police say. Detectives have just released a photograph of one of the three male suspects who allegedly held up the taxi driver in darkness that morning.

Detectives say the Ride Latino taxi arrived at the 14100 block of Pear Tree Lane to pick up a customer.  Three suspects, two of whom had their faces concealed and were armed with a knife, approached the taxi. The armed suspects proceeded to threaten the driver, and fled with the cash he handed over to them.

Anyone with information regarding the suspects or this armed robbery is asked to call the Major Crimes Division at 240-773-5100.  Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).  Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $10,000 for information provided to them that leads to an arrest in this case.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Good Hope teen missing

A teenage resident of the Good Hope area of Silver Spring is missing, and Montgomery County police are seeking the public's help in locating her. Crystal Chagala, 15, of the 1400 block of Farmcrest Way, has been reported as missing by her family. 

Chagala is described by detectives as a Latina, 4’08” tall, and weighing 110 pounds. She has brown eyes and black hair.  Chagala was wearing a winter coat over a black shirt, black jeans, and black Vans tennis shoes when she was last seen, although police have not disclosed on what date that was.

Anyone who has information regarding the whereabouts of Crystal Chagala is asked to call the Montgomery County Police Special Victims Investigations Division at 240-773-5400 or the police non-emergency number at 301-279-8000 (24 hours).

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Silver Spring construction update: Thayer & Spring (Photos)

Thayer & Spring is entering the home stretch of construction at 915 Thayer Avenue in downtown Silver Spring. Developed by Fairfield Residential, the apartment building will include a yoga studio, a gym, the Hideout social lounge, a bike repair facility, and the Barker Lounge pet spa. When completed, Thayer & Spring will feature 415 units, 15% of which will be affordable. It will also boast 10,500 SF of retail, and 35100 SF of public space, including a green plaza, a through-block walkway, and public art displays.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Crazy 8 and Gymboree closing at Wheaton Plaza, f.y.e. almost gone

The hits just keep on coming for the moribund Montgomery County economy. Two more retailers at Wheaton Plaza are sporting those "Everything Must Go!" and "Going Out of Business" signs now ubiquitous around the county. Crazy 8 and Gymboree are children's apparel retailers owned by the same company. Both stores are exiting at Wheaton Plaza.

Speaking of moribundity and closures, there isn't much left at fye, also closing its doors at Wheaton Plaza. But if you're a fan of Dryden Vos from Soylo: A Star Wars Story, you can pick him up for only $1, misspelled last name on box front and all. Montgomery County has suffered a net loss of over 2100 retail jobs since 2000, according to a spokeswoman for the Maryland Retailers Association.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Emergency utility work closes 16th St. at Colesville Road in both directions

Commuters encountered a rush hour nightmare this morning in Silver Spring. 16th Street has been closed in both directions at Colesville Road. The cause is emergency utility work. Montgomery County officials warn that the closure may last for an extended period today, and cautioned drivers to avoid the area if possible. Pepco crews are on-scene, where an overnight collision brought down power lines.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Go Stir Fry Express coming to Wheaton Plaza

Go Stir Fry Express will open a location at Wheaton Plaza soon. There are two other locations I can find, in New Jersey and nearby in Tysons. The Wheaton location appears to be unique in that it will be offering the currently-trendy stir-fried ice cream rolls in addition to the regular menu. Go Stir Fry will be located near Costco.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Briggs Chaney-area teen missing

Montgomery County police are searching for a teenager missing from the Briggs Chaney area of Silver Spring. Ma’cai Alexander Bogle, 15, of the 14000 block of Anstead Road, has been reported missing by his family. Bogle is described by detectives as an African American male, 6’02” tall, and weighing 160 pounds. He has brown eyes and black hair. Bogle was wearing a black sweatshirt and blue jeans when he was last seen.

Anyone who has information regarding the whereabouts of Ma’cai Alexander Bogle is asked to call the Montgomery County Police Special Victims Investigations Division at 240-773-5400 or the police non-emergency number at 301-279-8000 (24 hours).

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

East County snow update + more storms later this week

Montgomery County will attempt to get back to business today, after crews spent Monday finally plowing residential streets. The County government will be open. Montgomery County Public Schools will open two hours late.

All County recreation and aquatic centers will open on-time this morning, except senior centers, which will open at 10:00 AM. However, if your aquatic lesson is before 9:30 AM, it is cancelled for today. In fact, any program, class or activity that was scheduled before 10:00 AM this morning is also cancelled for today, as are senior nutrition and transportation programs.

Recreation programs for children five and under (tiny tots) that begin before noon are cancelled.

Metrobus, Metrorail, MARC trains and Ride On buses are all operating on normal weekday schedules today.


Rockville's Mayor and Council meeting that was postponed last night has been rescheduled for tonight, January 15, 2019 at 7:00 PM at City Hall, 111 Maryland Ave. Tonight's meeting agenda still includes:

A vote on a resolution to extend the moratorium on the filing, acceptance and receipt of applications for special exceptions, plans and plan amendments for certain uses in the mixed-use employment (MXE) zone, until July 1.

A report from the Adequate Public Facilities Standards (APFS) Work Group on Schools, regarding options to address a potential residential moratorium.

A presentation and discussion of the Planning Commission’s draft of the North Stonestreet Avenue Comprehensive Master Plan amendment.

A public hearing on the plan for the Shady Grove Neighborhood Center, a proposed mixed-use center with commercial, office and residential uses at 15825 Shady Grove Road, 2 and 4 Choke Cherry Road, and 2092-2098 Gaither Road.

A consent agenda that includes authorization for the city manager to execute a contract to purchase 6 Taft Court.

Takoma Park

The City of Takoma Park's offices will open at 10:30 AM this morning.

Montgomery Village

The Montgomery Village Foundation office will be open today. All Village recreation classes scheduled before noon are cancelled, except Seniors in Action, still meeting at 10:00 AM this morning.

Suburban News Network

Two other potential snowstorms are approaching the area later this week. Snow showers are possible Thursday afternoon, and a second storm could hit Sunday, a day that will have a low temperature of 10 degrees, according to The Weather Channel.

Monday, January 14, 2019

East County snow update

Woodmont Avenue at Norfolk Avenue
near Veterans Park in Bethesda
Montgomery County was hit hard by Winter Storm Gia over the last 48 hours. Snowfall totals ranged from 9.5-10.5" in parts of Bethesda to 11" in White Oak, 11.5" in Rockville and 12" in Germantown and Damascus.

Suburban News Network

A Snow Emergency is in effect. The federal government is closed.
Conditions are poor on Massachusetts Avenue
at Cromwell Drive in Bethesda, a state road
Montgomery County Public Schools are closed today, as is the Montgomery County government. All County facilities except for police and fire stations are closed, as well.

Metrorail subway lines and MetroAccess are operating on a normal weekday schedule, but Metrobus is on a Severe Snow Plan, meaning service is mostly limited to main thoroughfares. Ride On bus is operating on a normal weekday schedule. MARC train is operating on an R schedule. Northbound I-270 just south of Montrose Road is in bad shape, with multiple collisions reported in that area this morning, including one involving a police cruiser.
Route 355 at Mannakee Street
in Rockville
Rockville city government and city facilities are closed today, and tonight's Mayor and Council meeting has been cancelled. City trash collection won't take place today, and will be delayed one day for all customers the rest of this week.
Route 29 at Randolph Road
in East County
Takoma Park's city government announced last night it would be closed today if the federal government closed, as it has. City-operated child care is also closed today. City Manager Suzanne Ludlow claims that trash will be collected on-time today, and for the rest of the week. Takoma Park does have its own snow removal service, so perhaps they will be able to clear streets enough to do this.
Georgia Avenue at
Aspen Hill Road