Chevy Chase Apartment Development Gets Planning Department Stamp of Approval

Crescent at Chevy Chase to feature 111 units, replace current 41-unit complex

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A local man’s plan to overhaul a longtime family-owned apartment complex in Chevy Chase took an important step forward Thursday.

Rob Bindeman’s family has owned the Newdale Mews Apartments on Newdale Avenue for 40 years, and on Thursday preliminary and site plans proposing redevelopment of the property and construction of two approximately 50-foot-tall buildings in its place were approved by the Montgomery County Planning Board.

“It’s a big win 10 years in the making and we’re very happy the Crescent at Chevy Chase is going to be a reality,” Bindeman said Thursday afternoon.

The Crescent at Chevy Chase is one project encompassing the construction of two buildings with a shared entrance court, lobby and amenity area to replace the existing 41-unit building.

Each building will have underground parking, totaling 88 spaces for the proposed 111 apartment units.

To be located across the street from the future light-rail Purple Line, the Crescent at Chevy Chase project will include up to 129,472 square feet of development.

Plans submitted by Landmark Realty Inc., of which Bindeman is the president, also call for construction of a shared-use path that would connect the Capital Crescent Trail to Connecticut Avenue, including planting trees along the path and performing “off-site environmental enhancements to the Coquelin Run stream valley.”

Bindeman said the project’s development timeline will be re-evaluated over the next few weeks and the existing apartment complex will remain open for current residents through 2019.

“We keep in regular communication with our current tenants regarding development plans, and we will honor leases through all of 2019,” Bindeman said.

The board approved a sketch plan for the project in December 2017 that called for 130 dwelling units, but community members raised concerns about compatibility with nearby structures, so developers reduced the scope of the project to increase the buildings’ setback from the rear property line and incorporated more neutral colors and masonry consistent with nearby homes.

A representative for the Purple Line testified in favor of the Crescent project Thursday, saying it represents an “exemplary example” of a project that takes advantage of nearby transportation opportunities and other amenities.

“We worked with a skilled team of consultants in a very challenging, constrained site and their concepts are outstanding,” Bindeman said. “The end result is this project is going to be the best place to live on the Purple Line. We knew the potential and we’re excited about the prospects of this project.”

However, owners of homes to the north of the property who spoke at Thursday’s meeting said they were concerned about the setback, removal of trees between the proposed development and their homes and the proposed height of the two connected buildings.

Bindeman said he and his development team have worked to address neighbors’ concerns in the past and will continue those efforts.

“We understand change is hard,” Bindeman said. “We’ve been long-term managers and good neighbors for 40 years and that’s not going to change. To the best of our abilities, we’ll continue to work with community members to address their concerns.”

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