Draft letter protesting closure of West Gateway Pedestrian NIH entrance



I am writing to protest the impending closure of the West Gateway Pedestrian entrance to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) campus in Bethesda, MD.  I understand the entrance is to close on September 30, 2018, and I am upset that we did not receive notice of this decision earlier. I am writing to request that the entrance remain open.


I am a resident of Huntington Terrace, which sits across from the NIH on Old Georgetown Road, and this entrance allows residents of my neighborhood to cross the NIH campus and access the Medical Center Metro station. Such access was not restricted until NIH built a fence around the campus in the mid-2000s, and in recognition of this prior use and to allow alternative access to the NIH campus to allow access to Medical Center metro, the West Gateway entrance was established.


This access is important for several reasons.  First, it makes the commute to the Metro more predictable, since it is not dependent on bus schedules, which can be delayed by traffic (which can be substantial in Bethesda). Secondly, it promotes walking, a healthy endeavor that the NIH should encourage rather than discourage. Finally, it increases our neighborhood’s property values since residents can walk to the Medical Center Metro in 15-20 minutes.  This is not true for the Bethesda metro


The NIH Campus Perimeter Shuttle, which operates from 6:30 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on weekdays, is not an adequate alternative. For onet, the bus arrival is unpredictable and affected by traffic (traffic along Old Georgetown Road and Wisconsin Avenue comes to a crawl during these times).  In addition, it does not accommodate those who wish to cross the campus after 9 a.m.


Please contact the appropriate person at NIH and reverse the decision to close this important access to public transportation for my neighborhood.


Thank you.


Amy Royden-Bloom

On behalf of the Huntington Terrace Civic Association

Meeting between Huntington Terrace residents and Suburban Hospital and its construction team

Dear Neighbors,

A meeting between Huntington Terrace residents and Suburban Hospital and its construction team will be held Wednesday, May 16, 7 pm, in the lower level auditorium of Suburban Hospital.  This is an opportunity to hear about the construction plans and schedule and to make comments or ask questions of the hospital leadership and the construction team about matters of interest and concern to you.  If you have questions or comments but are unable to attend, please contact any HTCA board member.  Thank you.

Lorraine Driscoll, President

Stephen Brown, Treasurer,

Kate Stern, Vice President

Lori Fish Bard, HTCA Board Member

Maggie Bree, HTCA Board Member

Marc Ghany, HTCA Board Member

Mark De Ravin, HTCA Board Member

HTCA Annual Meeting & Elections

HTCA Annual Meeting & Elections, Wednesday, January 24th, 7:30-8:30 p.m. at Bradley Hills Elementary

We have four openings on the HTCA board (in alternate years, we have three openings). If you are interested in joining the board, please contact Lorraine Driscoll at lorrainedris@gmail.com . At present, Marc Ghany and Kate Stern are each running for a second term, and Maggie Bree and Mark De Ravin have been nominated. Jonna Stoycos will continue as hospital liaison. Board members will be elected at the annual meeting.
In order to vote, you must be a current member of HTCA. The dues are $20. per household, per year, and memberships begin each January. You may join by mailing or dropping off a check payable to HTCA to HTCA Treasurer Stephen Brown at 5504 Hoover St., or use a credit card or Paypal on our website, htca.net. Extra funds are always appreciated, as the newsletter, meeting room space, July 4th & seasonal parties, legal and professional fund, and Triangle Garden all require funding. Please donate generously by check or via the website.
If you would like to vote but are unable to attend the meeting, please use the proxy form on htca.net and give your proxy to a neighbor attending (each HTCA member can carry up to 3 proxies). A neighbor may also carry your membership dues, or you can pay these at htca.net.

Community Liaison Committee (CLC) and Neighborhood Meetings with Suburban Hospital

As required by the 2010 legal decision, members of the HTCA Board, along with neighbors whose homes adjoin or confront Suburban Hospital, meet quarterly to discuss any issues that arise and the noise reports. The legal ruling requires that noise levels be tested 4 times per year in a few locations. In addition, there is monitoring of ground vibration levels during the construction at a few locations. If you have any questions or concerns that you would like brought up at the CLC meetings, please contact any HTCA Board member. In addition, there are twice yearly community meetings with Suburban Hospital officers and the construction team to answer questions and inform the neighborhood of developments. The next meeting is scheduled for May 16, 2018, at 7 pm, in the lower level auditorium at Suburban Hospital.
We are pleased that cameras have been placed at the SH garage Southwick staff only entrance/exit to assure that vehicles enter only from Old Georgetown Road and exit to Old Georgetown Road (rather than traveling through the neighborhood via Southwick Street). Owners of vehicles making prohibited turns into the neighborhood are subject to disciplinary action by SH and such action has been taken. We ask that neighbors continue to contact any board member if they observe a vehicle making a prohibited turn. Please note day, time, and any vehicle information (including color, make, and/or full or partial license plate). The 2010 legal agreement is quite strict about controlling vehicular traffic through the neighborhood, and we want to do what we can to ensure this problem does not grow.
Neighbors may have observed that trees, bushes, and grasses have been planted around the SH garage and in sections of the McKinley Street side of SH. The height, species, caliper, and location of the trees is spelled out in the approved landscaping plans, and we are gratified to see greenery return to the area.

A Shout-out and Thank You to Our Block Workers

Many, many thanks to our loyal and intrepid block workers, who deliver newsletters and directories to each household as needed, often on short notice, and in all temps and conditions. We very much appreciate each of you: Terese Bernstein, Diana Chimes, Connie Cissel, Caterina Earle, Penny Fovall, Mary Garofalo, Barry Hauptman, Linda King, Galina Knopman, Marta Legeckis, Kathleen Marsh, Jon Marsh, Deborah Perry, Maddy Rudd, Steven Sabol, Howard Sokolove, and Ruthie Sokolove. If you would like to be a neighborhood block worker or the block worker captain (delivering newsletter packets to the block workers), please contact Kate Stern.

Digital HTCA

• HTCA Web site – htca.net
• HTCA Facebook page: 
• Nextdoor Huntington Terrace (registration required) 
– huntingtonterrace.nextdoor.com/news_feed/
• To subscribe to our official announcements-only 
HTCAnet email list, please visit the Web site and look 
for email lists page.
• To subscribe to HT Exchange, our community 
discussion email group, email Stu Borman at sab2d47@yahoo.com orvisit: groups.yahoo.com/group/htcanet/and click the button that says “Join this Group.”

HTCA Board of Directors

• Lorraine Driscoll — President (lorrainedris@gmail.com), 8507 Garfield St.
• Stephen Brown — Treasurer (sbr286@gmail.com), 5504 Hoover St.
• Kate Stern — Vice President (sternkate@comcast.net), 5513 McKinley St.
• Lori Fish Bard — (lolabard@comcast.net), 5505 Lincoln St.
• Marc Ghany
• Srini Mirmira
• Jonna Stoycos