The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) Montgomery Parks is working to improve the accessibility of park and recreational facilities, programs, and services throughout the county park system.

Program Access

 Park Accessibility

For inquiries regarding inclusion services, programs, and accommodations, please contact the Program Access office:
Phone: 301-495-2581
MD Relay: 7-1-1 or 800-552-7724

Our goal is to make our park system accessible to people of all abilities. If you have suggestions or comments to help improve access in our parks or if you wish to identify an existing issue or concern please contact the ADA Compliance Project Manager:
Phone: 301-650-2885

Program Access

What is Program Access?

Program Access, also referred to as “Inclusion”, within the Montgomery County Department of Parks is how individuals with disabilities are welcome to participate in recreational programs and activities of their choice.  Reasonable modifications (also known as accommodations) are provided to enable an individual’s successful participation in a program.  Minimum eligibility requirements (age, level of participation) must be met to participate.

What are the minimum requirements for success?

Minimum requirements apply to all persons with all abilities.  These include:

  • Age and registration requirements: patron must meet the age/registration requirements of the program.
  • Following the rules of conduct (with or without reasonable modifications).
  • Voluntary participation: recreation programs and activities are voluntary in nature. Participation will be encouraged and aided, but not forced.
  • Level of participation:  with or without reasonable modifications, the participant must be engaged in scheduled activities for most of the program time.
  • Consistent form of communication: to indicate basic needs and follow simple directions (verbal or non-verbal).
  • Ability to tolerate and function, with assistance, as a member of a larger social group (12 or more people).

What are some examples of reasonable modifications available to promote successful participation in a program?

  • Ongoing training provided for staff
  • An enhanced staff/participant ratio
  • Sign language interpretation for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Adaptive activity equipment and/or supplies
  • Use of companions
  • Large print/Braille
  • Disability and Sensitivity training

What services are not included when providing program access?

Program Access does not include the following:

  • Provision of a separate area or alternate activities for a significant portion (more than 25%) of the scheduled program
  • Exception to minimum compliance with the program’s rules and regulations, with or without modifications, established for the safety of all program participants and staff
  • Hiring, selection, or guaranteed assignment of a specific staff member
  • Individualized therapy within a program
  • Provision and/or purchase of personal custom devices

However, support staff may be provided to enhance the existing recreation program by providing adaptations and/or behavioral interventions.

Is Program Access the right choice/experience for me/my child?

Observe the program first-hand and ask yourself…

  • Have you/your child shown an interest in the program activity or subject matter?
  • Are you (s/he) comfortable and able to function appropriately, with or without assistance, in various inclusive environments, such as malls, restaurants, parks (etc.)?
  • Do your (or your child’s) current activities or goals prepare you for an inclusive recreation experience? 

What is the process?

There is a simple process that must be performed when modifications are needed:

  • Patron browses through and chooses programs and classes offered by Montgomery Parks (M-NCPPC)
  • Patron makes a formal request for an Americans with Disabilities (ADA) modification by contacting the Program Access office via e-mail or phone
  • The Program Access Specialist or Coordinator will follow up on request and contact the patron (usually by phone) to assess his or her needs
  • Once the modification is in place, the Program Access Specialist or Coordinator will notify the appropriate staff/supervisor before the program start date – all information is kept confidential and is on a need-to-know basis
  • Patron is welcomed into the program or class of his or her choice, along with the disability modification provided
  • Program Access Specialist or Coordinator evaluates the disability modifications provided, on-going

Accessibility and Non-Discrimination in M-NCPPC Programs and Services

Notice 15-01 provides patron guidance for requesting modifications and addressing accessibility concerns for programs and services offered within the respective departments.  Components covered are:

  • Notice under the Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Service Animals for People with Disabilities
  • Electronic Personal Assistive Mobility Devices
  • Accessible Seating under the Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Grievance Procedure under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Multi-Year Plan to Improve Accessibility

Asphalt, Road surface, Road, Lane Property, Log cabin, Cottage, House, Building Tree, Grass, Public space, Walkway, Sky


M-NCPPC Montgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, has developed a multi-year plan to enhance accessibility at parks and park facilities throughout the County. These efforts coincide with revised Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations (issued by The U.S. Department of Justice) that went into effect in March 2011. These regulations will impact parks, playgrounds, ball fields, picnic areas and other amenities operated by M-NCPPC Montgomery Parks as well as swimming pools, recreation centers, whirlpools, saunas and exercise rooms operated by the Montgomery County Recreation Department. Montgomery Parks performed an extensive self-evaluation of all parks and park facilities while simultaneously conducting public outreach to solicit input, comments, and suggestions regarding our approach, strategies, and priorities. The results of the analyses and public outreach are included in the Final Transition Plan. The Transition Plan also outlines the schedules and costs of all physical improvements within the park system, a summary of our program access initiatives, and provides information on the progress through 2016, as well as training and communication initiatives. Physical improvements in many parks will be an ongoing program for the foreseeable future as we continue to make our facilities accessible for the public.

Park improvement projects completed prior to 2016 can be found in the Transition Plan. The status of projects initiated since the beginning of 2016 is found in the summary below:

2019 Projects

Project Scheduled Work  Status Scheduled Start Date/ Completion Date
Brookside Nature Center-  Annex Addition of new shelter , parking, and sidewalks Complete
Capital View-Homewood Local Park Various accessibility upgrades including the parking lot, access to the activity building and softball fields Phase I and II- complete.

Phase III- construction to start Spring 2020

Spring 2019/ Winter 2019
Chase Urban Park Remove/replace old equipment (except play area) new surfacing Construction expected to start Winter 2020/ Spring 2020 Fall 2019/Spring 2020
Cheltenham Urban Park Minor accessibility upgrades, new furniture Construction expected to start Winter 2020/ Spring 2020 Fall 2019/Winter 2019
Druid Neighborhood Park Newly constructed walkway, ramp, and picnic table Complete
Evans Parkway Neighborhood Park Access to the playground and the parking lot Construction scheduled to start Spring 2020
Falls Road Local Park Addition of accessible exercise stations Complete
Fleming Local Park addition of walkway lighting and push-button controls for courts Complete
Georgian Forest Local Park Improve access to playground and ballfield Complete
Glenmont Local Park Minor entrance improvements will be completed at the same time the parking lot is repaved by Mo.Co. Public Schools. Complete
Good Hope Local Park addition of push-button controls and lighting for courts Complete
Johnson Local Park  Misc. Improvements at shelter and basketball court. Park should remain open although temporary closures can be expected Construction delayed until 2021
Longwood Local Park Provide accessible parking spaces, upgrades to improve access to the courts, play area Project deferred to 2021
Olney Manor Recreation Park Addition of push-button controls for miscellaneous tennis courts Complete
Potomac Community Neighborhood Park ADA Sidewalk extension from Falls Road bus stop into park Complete
Ridge Road Recreational Park addition of accessible parking spaces and walkways in Parking Lot 1, new walkway and bleachers for the soccer field Complete
Ridge Road Recreational Construction of accessibility improvements for the inline hockey rink as well as restroom upgrades. Complete
Rock Creek Regional Park Phase I- Archery Range improvements.

Phase II- Parking lot improvements deferred to Spring 2020

Phase I Complete. Phase II to start Spring 2020 Spring 2019/ Fall 2019
Rosemary Hills Local Park Trail improvements near Lanier Drive playground Construction to start Spring 2020 Summer 2019/Spring 2020
Seneca Landing Special Park Multi-phase project to provide a new accessible floating boat dock for canoeists/kayakers; 2nd phase is to upgrade the existing boat ramp area for motorized boats. Phase I-Construction to begin Winter 2020

Phase II- Construction to start Fall 2020

Summer 2019/ Fall 2020
Sligo- Dennis Local Park Exterior improvements will be coordinated with a playground renovation project.   Deferred until 2021
South Germantown Recreational Park ADA Access to Fields 18-22, including parking and walkway Complete
South Germantown Recreational Park Construction and expansion of accessible archery range and renovation of picnic shelters B, C, D and horseshoe pits Complete
Ridge Road Recreational Park addition of accessible parking spaces and walkways in Parking Lot 1, new walkway and bleachers for the soccer field Complete
Veirs Mill Local Park Various walkways, a new patio and interior modifications in activity building, modified parking lot, stormwater management. Complete
Waring Station Local Park The playground renovation project includes parking upgrades and access to the basketball court and field. Construction in progress Summer 2019/Winter 2019
Wheaton Regional Park Upgrades to athletic field #1 Complete


2020 Projects

Project Scheduled Work Status Scheduled Start Date/ Completion Date
Black Hill Regional Park Access improvements to small shelters In Design Summer 2020/ Fall 2020
Black Hill Regional Park Accessibility upgrades to Shelter A including new parking and grills. Complete
Black Hill Regional Park Expanded Shelter C plus upgraded parking. Work may be performed in multiple phases In Design Winter 2020
Cabin John Regional Park   Reconstruction and renovation of the amphitheater, family picnic area. The project will be phased over several years Deferred to 2021
Cabin John Regional Park Upgrades to/adjoining Povich Field Project scoping underway Spring 2021
Calverton Galway Local Park Renovations throughout the park including shelters, baseball field, trails Project scoping underway Fall 2021
Centerway Local Park Two-phase project. The first phase is accessibility upgrades at the baseball field. 2nd phase is a renovation of the playground, shelter, and parking lot Deferred to 2021
East Norbeck Local Park Softball fields, shelter, basketball courts access improvements, upgrading shelter grills Construction to start Spring 2020 Spring 2020
Fleming Local Park Spring Upgrades to parking, access to playground, shelter, softball field, tennis courts Design complete.

Construction expected Spring 2020

Spring 2020
General Getty Urban Park  Miscellaneous upgrades throughout the park including patio enhancements, walkways, picnic tables, tennis court access, etc. Design complete. Construction to start Fall 2020 Summer 2020
Layhill Local Park Accessibility upgrades to the soccer and softball fields, shelter and playground. Project scoping underway Fall 2020/Summer 2021
Merrimac Neighborhood Park                            Addition of accessible picnic table and grills Design complete. Construction TBD Spring/summer 2020
Mill Creek Towne Local Park Minor accessibility and parking lot upgrades Design complete.
Construction TBD
Spring/Summer 2020
Nolte Local Park Various renovations including access to the basketball courts, fields and playground Project scoping underway Spring 2020/Fall 2021
Northwest Branch Recreational Park Minor accessibility retrofits for parking, soccer field, and baseball field Complete
Olney Mill Neighborhood Park Expanded parking, accessible walkway to tennis/pickleball courts, drainage improvements Design complete.
Construction to start Spring 2020
Spring 2020
Rock Creek Regional Park Accessibility upgrades to the parking lot to improve access to archery range. Construction delayed Spring 2020
Saddlebrook Local Park Upgrades accessibility to basketball courts, soccer field, and playground Construction Spring 2020 Fall 2020/Spring 2021
South Germantown Recreational Park Upgrades at restroom buildings serving the adventure playground, Miracle Field, and picnic shelter area Construction  expected to start Winter 2020 Winter 2020
South Germantown Recreational Park Various upgrades at Fields E, F, tennis courts and basketball courts and to the playground Construction  expected to start Summer 2020 Fall 2020
South Germantown Recreational Park Mooseum Improvement Project. Minor accessibility improvements to interior and exterioer of building. Winter 2020
Sundown Local Park Playground renovation project as well as accessibility upgrades for shelters, softball field, gazebo, and parking In Design.  Construction to start Fall 2020 Summer 2021
Tilden Woods Local Park Various accessibility renovations to parking, court and playground access, new additional benches and tables. Construction to start Winter 2020 Winter 2020
Wheaton Regional Park                   Upgrades in the athletic area to Field 2 and 3 Field #2 to start this Summer 2020
Field 3 to start Summer 2021
Fall 2020/Spring 2021
Wheaton Regional Park Shorefield area new Fitness Station, with the improvements to ADA parking spaces and accessible route.  Restroom near Adventure Playground to also be renovated Construction  expected to start Spring 2020 Spring 2020
Wheaton Ice Arena Access improvement to the front entrance of the building In Design Summer 2020



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Last Updated: January 29, 2020