Friday, August 26, 2016

Burglary on Ridge Dr., assault on Montrose Ave. + more - Bethesda crime update

Here's a roundup of crimes reported across Bethesda on August 23, according to crime data:

Theft. 7300 block Wisconsin Avenue.

Burglary. 6400 block Ridge Drive at 6:36 PM.

Forgery/counterfeit/identity theft. 9600 block Culver Street.

Theft from vehicle. 4400 block Willard Avenue.

DUI arrest. 5200 block Tuckerman Lane.

Assault. 10500 block Montrose Avenue.

Theft from vehicle. 9800 block Falls Road.

Chuy's throws a party in the Pike District (Photos)

Tex-Mex restaurant Chuy's celebrated its upcoming first restaurant in Montgomery County with a Redfish Rally last night. The new restaurant is scheduled to open in October at Federal Plaza, but the party was held at another nearby Federal Realty property, Montrose Crossing. Chuy's pitched a tent atop the parking garage there, and served up food and drink samples.
Chuy's chefs make fresh
guacamole on the spot
To emphasize the chain's commitment to fresh ingredients, chefs were making fresh guacamole and bartenders were squeezing fresh lime juice for margaritas all night long. To emphasize the company's commitment to the community, Chuy's announced that the local charity they will support is Hero Dogs, a Brookeville-based non-profit that trains and places service dogs with veterans who need them free of charge. Several hero dogs were in attendance, joining Chuy the Redfish and former Rockville City Councilman Tom Moore among the notable guests.

Chuy's plans to hire an impressive 175 employees at this restaurant. Those interested can apply in-person Monday through Saturday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM at the Chuy’s hiring office located at 1776 E. Jefferson Street, Unit #117, in Rockville.
Banner touts that
"everything is made
from scratch" at Chuy's
Another promotes their
fresh hatch green chiles
Free t-shirts
...although you could make
a charitable donation if you wanted
I can report that the
fresh-squeezed lime juice
made a noticeable difference
in the margaritas
Fiesta essentials
on display
Stringed lights hung
over the crowd
Chuy himself (herself?) made
an appearance

Montgomery County is
gaining on Austin in the
weird department every day
Sauces are so important
at Chuy's, that they have
their own webpage
Speaking of sauces,
a chef adds one to
an attendee's nachos

Chuy's brought along
some of their trademark
interior design accents -
hubcaps and...
Meet hero dog

Police have suspect in River Rd./Mass. Ave. neighborhood thefts in Bethesda (Photos)

Montgomery County Police have released the name and photos of a suspect they allege stole property from vehicles in neighborhoods along River Road and Massachusetts Avenue in Bethesda in recent months. Among the items Dwayne Nathaniel Keymist, 31, a Washington, D.C. resident (before going on the lam), allegedly took from locked and unlocked cars were credit cards. Police say Keymist used these cards at Target in Gaithersburg, and in purchases he made in Prince George's County.
Keymist allegedly in the
act of using credit cards
stolen from Bethesda residents
at Target in Gaithersburg
There is now a warrant for Keymist’s arrest, charging him with felony theft, fraud, identity theft, and credit card offenses. The search is on, and the public's help is needed.

Police are asking anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Dwayne Nathaniel Keymist to please call the Montgomery County Police Department’s non-emergency number at 301-279-8000 or to contact the 2nd District Patrol Investigations Unit at 240-773-6726. Tipsters who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Burglary on Crescent St., DUI arrest on Connecticut Ave. + more - Bethesda crime update

Here's a roundup of crimes reported across Bethesda on August 22, according to crime data:

Vehicle burglary. 4400 block West Virginia Avenue.

Theft. 7600 block Connecticut Avenue.

DUI arrest. 6700 block Connecticut Avenue.

Theft. Whole Food Market (Friendship Heights).

Vehicle burglary. 3500 block Raymond Street (Martin's Additions).

Burglary. 4900 block Crescent Street.

Theft. 8900 block Bradmoor Drive.

Theft. 7100 block Democracy Boulevard.

PR battle over future of Bethesda Metro Center plaza continues (Photos)

Dueling concerts. Coffee and donuts. Artworks being created live as commuters pass by. The fight to win hearts and minds over the future of the plaza at Bethesda Metro Center could spawn an arts and entertainment district all by itself.

Brookfield owns the rights to develop the plaza, and has plans for a building of up to 290' tall that would frame and separate from noisy traffic a new central park. Their development plans also include restaurants and retail to activate the space. They've created a campaign called Bethesda Connected to promote the project.

Not so fast, says Clark Enterprises, whose headquarters currently has prime visibility on the plaza. Clark has launched a campaign, Protect Bethesda Open Space, that has appealed to concerns by residents that there is a lack of parkland and open space in downtown Bethesda.

It's hard to argue that Brookfield can't execute its plan - they have the legal grounds and right to do so. Clark's primary hope, then, is to generate enough support for its proposal, and sufficient opposition to the Brookfield plan. Central to their appeal may be their standing as one of the highest-profile hometown firms.

I've reported on this a number of times, but the campaigns are heating up again. Several mailings to downtown residents in July have been followed up by events and happenings at the plaza.
Clark Enterprises sets up
for live concert last night
Last night, Clark hosted a live concert on the plaza that promoted Protect Bethesda Open Space. As the musicians played, an artist sponsored by Brookfield was carefully coloring in his new mural that wraps around the top of the bus bays. The immediate winner was the Bethesda pedestrian, who could enjoy the free concert, watch an artist in action - or both simultaneously.
Brookfield-sponsored artist
 colors in his
mural as Clark's band plays
Brookfield has its own concert series called Fridays on the Plaza, from 6:30-9:00 PM, and earlier this month gave away free coffee and donuts to Surge-weary Metro riders. The mural is an early preview of the international Arts Brookfield initiative that Brookfield promises to expand to its Bethesda property. It is also part of a major investment Brookfield is making in renovating the bus bays area, and making it more inviting.

You can be sure that the plaza, along with Pike & Rose and Carr Properties' development planned for the current Apex Building site, are going to be in the competition for the prize of the new Marriott headquarters. Could public opposition to the 290' building (an opposition currently unmeasured by scientific polling, by the way), trump Brookfield's ground lease rights and clear economic development appeal in currently-moribund Montgomery County?

Stay tuned. And pass the donuts.

Harris Teeter opens in Bethesda (Photos)

Harris Teeter opened yesterday in the Flats at 8300 luxury apartments, at the corner of Battery Lane and Woodmont Avenue in downtown Bethesda. There were many special offers for customers on the first day, and feedback from those who ventured into the store was overwhelmingly positive. Unless you arrive via walking or bicycle, your visit will likely begin with drive down into the steep garage below the building.

Reserved spaces for
military veterans near
the door are a nice touch
No Escalades allowed
in this space
If you ordered your
groceries online, pull
into the Express Lane
for pick-up
Once inside, pick up a coffee at the in-store Starbucks.

Now it's time to start shopping!

Now it's time to check out. I'll have to test their self-checkouts, and report to you if they are better than the ones at Giant and CVS (not exactly a high bar).