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Rockville News

Posted on: October 20, 2017

Rockville Town Square Plaza Recognized for Design Excellence

Judges say, ‘Space does everything that a public square should do’

Rockville, Maryland, Oct. 20 — Rockville’s Town Square Plaza has been recognized for design excellence with a jury citation from the Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.

The award ceremony was held Thursday, Oct. 19, in Silver Spring. This year’s Design Excellence Awards honored both buildings and landscapes in Montgomery County that are currently in use and less than 10 years old. The four-member Design Excellence Awards jury, composed of architects, a developer and a landscape architect, met in September 2017 to select the two winners and issue seven citations, making their decisions independently from the county’s planning department.

“This space does everything that a public square should do,” the competition’s jurors stated. “It encourages activities such as sitting on the grass, splashing in the fountain, meeting friends, shopping, ice skating and Zumba dancing that are all about connection and community. The square is not only the symbolic center of Rockville, but its civic heart.”

Rockville Town Square Plaza was opened in 2007. The mixed-use, public-private, transit-oriented project represented the first phase of the city’s Town Center Master Plan. The primary concept behind creating the 40,000-square-foot open space was to recreate Rockville’s downtown as the heart of the city.

The design excellence awards seek to “recognize exceptional work in architecture, landscape architecture and urban design,” according to the county planning department’s website. Town Square Plaza, planned and designed by Street-Works Studio, was recognized for its high-quality design in the Open Spaces and Landscapes category.

While considered a city park, Town Square was designed to serve suburban-style neighborhoods in a fully urban setting where numerous uses for the space converge.

“A goal was to create an outdoor ‘room,’ inside of which the public could feel comfortable, but to still feel open, and for the buildings not to block sky and sun,” said David Levy, Rockville’s chief of long range planning. “It was modeled, generally, on Italian piazzas.”

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Marylou Berg
Director of Communication

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