Rockville has been named, by various websites and publications, a “best” city for families, for women entrepreneurs, for young professionals as well as one of the best suburbs of Washington DC. Rockville is also a very diverse community as noted in the Housing Market Analysis Report commissioned by the City.
Locally when people think of Rockville, they think of Rockville Pike, which is a main drag with every single store you could ever want in your life. Some people find this to be the epitome of the soul-sucking suburb life. Disclaimer: I personally love it. I lived in Rockville for a few years and I spent many of my weekends on Rockville Pike.
If a main drag with a lot of traffic and big box stores isn’t your thing, I have good news. Rockville is comprised of dozens of neighborhoods, each with their own personality. Less urban than Bethesda, but not quite as suburban as Mayberry, I personally think there is so much to love about Rockville and pretty much everyone can find their home here.
The boundaries of Rockville include the part inside the City limits and then the rest of Rockville which extends pretty far to the east. If you’re inside city limits, you will have different trash and municipal services than if you’re in Rockville but outside city limits.
Red line metro services Rockville and with stations in downtown Rockville as well as Twinbrook station south of downtown. Interstate 270 runs through Rockville splitting it into east and west.
Rockville is the county seat for Montgomery County, MD.
Rockville was formerly known by many other names before becoming named Rockville – due to its proximity to Rock Creek Park. The original buildings were in what is now downtown Rockville, and Rockville was incorporated in 1860. Records were destroyed by Confederate soldiers though. Don’t forget, we are below the Mason Dixon line, this was the south in the Civil War. Rockville used to be part of Prince George’s County. Then it was taken into Frederick County. Finally in 1776, it was separated into its current-day Montgomery County.
In the mid 1900’s things were declining so much that Rockville became the first city in Maryland to become part an urban renewal plan. Buildings were all knocked down, attempts were made to revitalize and it really took quite some time for Rockville to become what we see today. Retail moved out to 355 which is Rockville Pike
Did you know:
Rockville, along with Bethesda to the south and Gaithersburg to the north, is part of a Technology Corridor – home to tons of software and bio-tech companies.
F Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald are buried in Rockville!
There is a huge variety of homes here. There are condos, apartments, townhomes and single family homes. There is a historic district, homes that are 100 years old and relatively new homes as well. Note: Do not mess with the historic district. You’ve been warned.
Condos range from the $200,000’s to the $700,000’s. Townhomes can start in the $400’s for a smaller home up into the low $1M’s for a large 4-5 bedroom newer townhome.
Single family homes range from small ramblers in the $500,000’s to the $800,000’s for a home in the Wootten High School district. If you want to pay over $1M, you absolutely can. It will get you 4000 sf or more, and more land.
There is a Farmers Market in Rockville and every grocery store you want. Costco is in the next city – Gaithersburg.
Safeway, Giant, Harris Teeter, Trader Joes, Mom’s Organic plus smaller ethnic food grocery stores are all over Rockville.
As far as restaurants, it’s a food mecca but not in the more highbrow way we think of DC. If you pull up all the restaurants on google that are 4 or more stars, there’s a lot. You have the standard American food like Clydes Tower Oaks Lodge which is an experience all its own, Stanford Grill also in the Tower Oaks area, Matchbox on Rockville Pike and Silver Diner. If you want Asian food there are a ton of choices, with many clustered around downtown Rockville. Urban Hot Pot, Bangkok Garden, Iron Age. There’s Peruvian and Latin food – La Canela or El Mariachi. There’s even Greek – Mykonos Grill on Rockville Pike.
In spring there is an Annual Arts Festival downtown.
I wouldn’t necessarily call this a pedestrian/biker friendly paradise, but they are trying. There are 34 miles of shared use paths right now.
There are 33 parks and every home in Rockville is a short walk to one of these parks.
There are community centers – Lincoln Park, Thomas Farm and Twinbrook. Rockville Swim and Fitness Center, Glenview Mansion Civic Center, Croydon Creek Nature Center, and Rockville senior center plus outdoor recreation activities. Rockvillemd.gov
To cover all the offerings would take hours. There are classes for sports, fitness, dance, arts, music. There are sports leagues, festivals, 5K’s, 10K’s. Rockville has newsletters you can subscribe to on their website if you want news on events, arts and culture, and other topics.
There are 3 High School Pyramids here: Wootton, Richard Montgomery and Rockville High Schools. Wootton has a well ranked STEM program, and is often ranked quite high on national lists. Richard Montgomery has the county’s first IB program. Rockville H.S. is in the eastern side of Rockville and has both IB and AP class offerings and has won awards for their school paper and journalism.
It’s very dog-friendly here! Doggies need licenses in Rockville, but once they have that, they are able to go to the city’s dog park in King Farm. There are tons of pet stores, groomers, daycare centers, recreation areas. And there are lots of restaurants with dog-friendly patios!
Interesting tidbit – there is an off-leash program which a dog can get approved for. But you know how you see those field sobriety tests and think: I couldn’t do that sober with my eyes open? It’s the same with the dog test. They evaluate the dog on how it reacts to various distractions – kids playing ball, a car beeping the horn, people approaching.
I know. It was mostly good stuff. So if this was a pros and cons video and it’s all pros, what are the cons? Pretty easy – it’s definitely traffic. Rockville Pike is lots of shopping fun but the traffic can be grueling. Dealing with the Rockville City Government is a pain, and dealing with the historic district, even worse than a pain! But, all in all, I am a fan, and would love to chat more with you about Rockville!