ANNAPOLIS – The renewal of Rockville Town Center received a lift from the state Wednesday as the Board of Public Works approved more than $2.8 million in grants for the project.
The funds must be matched by Rockville’s mayor and city council. Altogether, including Montgomery County’s share, $11 million will be spent for the eight phases of reconstruction in downtown Rockville.
The first phase, an extension of Maryland Avenue and the demolition of the old mall, should be completed in January. The entire project should be finished around the turn of the century.
The old Rockville mall had been beset by problems of ownership and occupancy since it was built in 1972. The property was sold six times, and ultimately was demolished earlier this year.
“That mall never did take off,” Comptroller Louis Goldstein said Wednesday.
Rockville Center Inc. owns the area under reconstruction and has developed a plan for a series of office and residential buildings over the seven square blocks. Goldstein, in approving the project, offered good wishes. “The last one was a mistake,” he said. “I’m hoping it’s not a mistake this time.” -30-