New development in Bethesda has residents concerned

Downtown Bethesda. (Photo: Flickr/light sketch)

A new $200 million development project in Bethesda is signaling more growth in the area, but it's also causing concern for residents and shoppers.

The construction, which will not be quick, is slated to close Lot 31, the parking lot at the corner of Woodmont and Bethesda Avenues for 30 months. This means a loss of nearly 300 parking spaces.

"It's hard enough finding parking now," said Nidhi Mal, a Bethesda shopper. "Once it closes, I don't know if I'll be coming here."

The project will include 80 condos and 150 plus apartments. Groundbreaking is expected to take place next month.

Stacy Dabney owns a salon in downtown Bethesda. She doesn't want the project to affect her business so she's trying to educate her clients about the parking issue.

"I want to explain to them the best options and be proactive versus them getting down here and being in gridlock or not being able to find a spot," Dabney said.

The Circulator bus schedule will be expanded to get people from area parking lots into downtown Bethesda.

In addition, Woodmont Avenue just south of Wisconsin will be closed for 20 months.

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