July 1, 2010

Panhandlers in Silver Spring

Posted in musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 9:36 am by silversprung

Like many commuters who walk in and out of the Silver Spring metro each day, I usually encounter people asking for money at the station. Sometimes no one is asking. Sometimes it’s several people. Regulars include the elderly white man with long hair who is usually smoking and holding a sign, and the black, middle-aged woman who is usually seated along the construction site.

I used to commute through Bethesda where the woman who lived in the tunnel was a mainstay. Some of the homeless in Bethesda would walk over to the metro from the shelter on Cordell in the mornings and others were downtown to visit the Bethesda Cares office.

So here are some questions for all you old time Silver Springers:

Have you seen the number of panhandlers increase or decrease in The Spring? Are there shelters or assisted living facilities in downtown Silver Spring? Do you know any of these metro folks’ stories? And any recommendations if readers are interested in volunteering or assisting other Silver Spring organizations?

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June 30, 2010

“No Train on Wayne”? The Purple Line Saga

Posted in musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 9:37 am by silversprung

They dot the lawns and front entryways of many homes across Silver Spring- the purple “No Train on Wayne” lawn signs. I’m well-aware of the longstanding Purple Line metro project, but decided to do a little research on the reaction Silver Spring residents have to the plan.

I’m sure all you longtime residents know the story, but for all those readers new to the area and those who’ve never visited, here goes…

The proposed purple line would connect Prince George’s county in the east with Montgomery County in the west offering commuters a mass transit alternative to the Beltway. 

Last August, Gov. Martin O’Malley announced his choice of a Light Rail Transit system over a rapid bus system as the preferred method of transportation for the line. O’Malley said last year that LRT is favored because it’s more “cost-effective and rider-friendly” and argued that light rail has made many advances and won’t be as disturbing as other, older light rail systems.

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