BOARD OF APPEALS
Stella B. Werner Council Office Building
100 Maryland Avenue Rockville, Maryland 20850
Case No. CBA-102
PETITION OF THE GARRETT PARK SWIMMING POOL
REVISED RESOLUTION TO MODIFY SPECIAL EXCEPTION (Resolution Adopted December 4, 2013)
Effective Date of Resolution: February 12, 2014
Case No. CBA-102 is a special exception that the Board of Appeals granted to Garrett Park Swimming Pool Association effective November 4, 1953, under Section 176-13, G(29), Mont. Co. Code, 1950, to permit a community swimming pool. On September 19, 1979, the Board passed a resolution to clarify the hours of operation for the pool. Effective July 18, 2013, the Board of Appeals granted an administrative modification of the special exception, under Section 59-G-1.3(c)(1) of the Zoning Ordinance following a May 23, 2013 request from Jean Horan, President of the Board of Directors of the pool. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 59-G-1.3(c)(1)of the Zoning Ordinance, in a resolution dated August 16, 2013, the Board of Appeals suspended the administrative modification and held a hearing on the modification on December 4, 2013 following timely requests from James and Jean Agenbroad and Ann Gordon. At the end of that proceeding the Board reinstated the modification with revisions based on proposals from Garrett Park Swimming Pool Association [Exhibit No. 36] and evidence and testimony at the hearing on December 4, 2013.
The subject property is Lots 12, 13 and 14, Block 94, located on Cambria Avenue in the Town of Garrett Park, Maryland 20896, in the R-90 Zone.
The Board reinstates the modification to allow the following physical and operational characteristics of the special exception:
- Hours of Operation:
General Hours (open to all members)
3 p.m. to 8 p.m. on days Montgomery County Public Schools are in session
10 a.m. to 9 p.m. all other days
(a) 6 a.m. weekdays- early use by adult “master swim” participants only
(b) 7:30 a.m. weekdays during swim team season (from the end of the school year until late July)
(c) 7:30 a.m. on Saturdays- use by swim team members and members of visiting teams when GPSPA hosts Saturday morning swim meets; no amplified sound will be used before 9 a.m.
(d) 10 p.m. closing on evenings when the temperature exceeds 90 degrees, at the discretion of pool management- use by all members
(e) 10:30 p.m. closing on two evenings a week- adult members (18+) only
(f) late night use permitted up to 11:30 p.m. no more than 4 weekend nights per season for special events
(g) one overnight use for the swim team
- General Pool Operation
(a) Season. Saturday before Memorial Day through mid-September.
Based on staff availability the Pool may be open for curtailed hours on select days after Labor Day until no later than the second full week of September.
(b) Membership. Approximately 535 families. GPSPA estimates that approximately 70% of Pool membership is within walking or biking distance of the Pool.
(c) Refreshments are provided in the form of cold drinks and snacks dispensed through vending machines during normal operating hours.
(d) Fencing. A chain link fence surrounds the entire perimeter of the property, enclosing pools, bathhouse, guardhouse and other facilities. It is 10′ tall on the eastern boundary (with the Town tennis court) and 8′ on all other sides.
(e) Landscaping. Mature trees and shrubs are maintained by GPSPA throughout the property, and new plantings are installed as warranted. All plantings are maintained for appearance and safety, as well as to provide visual and sound screening between the pools, and between the property and residents.
(f) Lighting. All pools, the bathhouse and grounds are well-lit; lights are illuminated all night during the season. The Town-owned and maintained parking lot is fully lit year-round. All lights are directed away from the residential area to the south:
(g) Parking. As noted above, a significant proportion of Pool members live within walking and biking distance of the Pool. A Town-owned and -maintained parking lot is immediately adjacent to the Pool property. The Pool and the Town of Garrett Park provide parking for bicycles, scooters, etc. On approximately 5 or 6 occasions during the season – 2 or 3 Wednesday night “B” team meets and a similar number of Saturday morning “A” meets – as well as holidays and some weekends, there is parking overflow to adjacent streets. For swim meets, the GP Swim Team and the Town government coordinate to provide community-wide notice of the meet and encourage walking to the Pool by local participants; the Town, GPSPA and the Swim Team also cooperate on other steps to minimize traffic and parking impact on nearby residents and to assure a safe vehicle and pedestrian environment at all times.
(h) GPSPA shall at all times observe applicable Montgomery County and Town of Garrett Park rules, regulations and ordinances.
(i) Music/Amplified Sound
(A) No music will be played by a means different from, or to a level greater than that of a usual and conventional home reproduction system such as a CD player or stereo.
(B) The use of such a conventional home reproduction system to play music or otherwise amplify sound for entertainment purposes shall be permitted for one late night use per operating season only, and shall be discontinued by 10:00 p.m.. For the remaining permitted late night uses and the permitted overnight use, the use of a home reproduction system for entertainment purposes shall be discontinued by 9:00 p.m.. Speakers for any such reproduction system used for entertainment purposes shall be oriented away from neighboring residences, so as to face the abutting railroad tracks.
(j) Sound – During late night uses, GPSPA shall monitor sound levels at the perimeter of theproperty every thirty minutes. During the single overnight use, GPSPA shall conduct such monitoring at the perimeter of the property every thirty minutes until midnight and every hour thereafter until the conclusion of the event.
(k) Community Liaison. GPSPA shall designate a Community Liaison to address issues that affect pool neighbors. The Community Liaison will serve as a contact person for neighbor complaints. GPSPA must provide the name and contact information for the designated Community Liaison, together with information regarding the scheduled dates for home swim meets, late night and overnight uses, to neighbors at the beginning of every operating season. A record of any neighbor complaints received by the Community Liaison in writing must also be filed with the Board of Appeals on an annual basis.
- Physical Setting of the Pool
(a) The physical setting of the Pool and its immediate surroundings remain unchanged since 1953. Ms. Horan’s letter explains: “The property is leased from the Town of Garrett Park, which coordinates with GPSPA on items of mutual interest. The site is bordered on the north by the CSX right-of-way and tracks, on the south by Cambria Avenue, and on both the east and west by recreational areas owned and maintained by the Town of Garrett Park. The pool property does not abut any residential property. The nearest residences are south, across Cambria Avenue, and those homes do not “face” the Pool; rather, it is those residential properties’ rear yards that are opposite the pool property.”
(b) Two small wooden decks have been added: one deck is contiguous to and expands the concrete deck seating adjacent to the original pool; the other deck is ground-level and supplies seating adjacent to the volleyball court/child play area.
The Board of Appeals considered the modification at its Work sessions on June 5, 2013 and June 19, 2013, and at a public hearing on December 4, 2013. Section 59-G-1.3(c)(1) of the Montgomery County Zoning Ordinance provides, pertaining to modification of special exceptions:
If the proposed modification is such that the terms or conditions could be modified without substantially changing .the nature, character or intensity of the use and without substantially changing the effect on traffic or on the immediate neighborhood, the Board, without convening a public hearing to consider the proposed change, may modify the term or condition.
Based on the evidence of record and the evidence presented at the December 4, 2013 hearing, as set forth herein and in the Board’s February ??, Resolution to Re-Instate Modification in Case No. CBA-102, which is hereby incorporated by reference into this Resolution, and for the reasons set forth therein, the Board finds that the requested modification will not substantially change the nature, character or intensity of the use or its effect on traffic or on the immediate neighborhood. Thus the Board finds that the modification should be reinstated, as revised by Exhibit No. 36 and during the proceeding of December 4, 2013, as depicted in this Revised Resolution to Modify Special Exception. Therefore, on a motion by John H. Pentecost, seconded by Catherine G. Titus, Chair, with Stanley B. Boyd and David K. Perdue, Vice-Chair, in agreement, and Carolyn J. Shawaker necessarily not participating, the Board adopted the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Appeals for Montgomery County, Maryland that the opinion stated above is adopted as the Resolution required by law as its decision on the above-entitled petition.