Mark Pierzchala for Rockville Mayor
Mark has the experience, knowledge and forward thinking perspective to make Rockville work for ALL of us. Mark takes the long-term view and invests in homes, neighborhoods, and Rockville's prosperity. No other candidate can match his record of success over his 12 years on the Council. He has the courage of his plainly stated convictions.
Mark has long been a proponent for smart development policies that conserve the character of our neighborhoods while ensuring our children and elderly can afford to continue living in the community. Mark makes thoughtful decisions when it comes to protecting our neighborhoods from ill-conceived projects. He successfully led opposition to the I-270 widening, to neighborhood school bus depots.
We need a Mayor like Mark that we can trust to put the needs of all our community first so that Rockville can continue being a great place to live for everyone.
Mark's Unmatched Record of Success
Our Children as Young Adults
Mark is in this race to champion the future of our young adults. This is what he has done for 12 years and now we need a Mayor to be that champion. As a former public school parent and husband to a public school employee at College Gardens Elementary School, Mark understands the importance of a quality education for our children. He also understands the need to create continued opportunities after they graduate. Mark focuses on the future economic prospects of all of our schoolchildren, from Kindergarteners through high school. We have to provide for their adulthood, for example, by providing homes that future graduates entering the workforce can afford. Mark believes that society is not providing younger generations with the same opportunities as their parents. He seeks to change City policies so that young adults can thrive. He recognizes that housing costs are a life-long economic burden for them as they come out of college, trade school, or the military. Mark champions economic development, especially mixed-use neighborhoods near transit, as a way of providing future homes for our children and to secure the needed funds to increase school capacity.
Housing for All
Mark is Rockville’s leading housing vote provider. He is the one who realized that Rockville’s zoning policies have priced out of Rockville our own young adults, seniors who are downsizing, and many others. To live here, they must assume a life-long financial burden. Mark supports both privately financed and non-profit affordable housing. Privately financed housing will become affordable again only if many more homes are built. Among private projects Mark has voted for are the Bainbridge near King Farm, approved 3-2. He was the leading advocate for the Twinbrook Quarter project. Both are near a Metro Station and provide more money in school impact fees than the number of students they will generate. Privately provided housing should provide homes for mid-income workers. For non-profit affordable housing, Mark supported the building of the Victory Court senior assisted living building on Monroe Street and the Mainstreet building on Monroe Place. Mark stood up to neighborhood opposition to bring Rockville these needed affordable living projects. In Town Center, if you live in The Met, BLVD 44, or the Ansel, or in the Escher at Twinbrook Metro, thank Mark. In 2012, Mark voted to enable and to fund the preservation of over 200 naturally affordable units at Fireside Park Apartments on Monroe Street. There was an ugly, months long opposition to this effort to stop a developer from turning naturally affordable units into a high-end complex. It was approved on a 3-2 vote. In his own College Gardens neighborhood, Mark emphatically supported a similar project at Scarborough Square in 2022. Neighbors applauded the project at a Civic Association meeting.
Mark is one of Rockville’s foremost environmental practitioners and policy makers. He bikes within the City year-round. He mows the lawn with a push mower and rakes leaves with a rake. His yard is a certified National Wildlife Habitat. As College Gardens Civic Association President, he worked with the City to design an award-winning stormwater management pond within College Gardens Park. Mark twice served as the Council liaison to the Environment Commission. He assisted in the early formulation of Rockville’s Climate Action Plan. He has walked many of Rockville’s stream valleys and has observed the degradation of the waterways by runoff, and of the forest floor by deer. Mark has been Rockville’s foremost advocate of transit-oriented development, often in spite of strident opposition. Mark sees the support of these developments as the hallmark of a true environmentalist. They offer greater economic benefit, by orders of magnitude, than other initiatives. Mark was the earliest and a continual standout leader in the opposition to the I-270 widening. This issue is not finished. He understands that as long as we make it harder for people to live among us, the more they will move to the north and drive through us. His experiences makes Mark the best candidate to deal with the State Highway Administration for I-270.
Mark understands the important role businesses play in strengthening our community and local economy. He has been the constant supporter of business and economic development in Rockville. He is a small business owner and a member of the Greater Rockville Chamber of Commerce. As Councilmember he voted to attract Choice Hotels International to Town Center and fought back against a suggestion that Rockville Economic Development Incorporated (REDI) be defunded. As the Council liaison to REDI, Mark was instrumental in the start-up of Rockville Women’s Business Center that is now today’s highly successful Maryland Women’s Business Center (MWBC). REDI and MWBC are here today because of Mark. Mark sees economic development as key to providing for the future economic success of young adults and for Rockville’s vibrancy. He understands that economic success funds new schools and parks. He emphasizes mixed-use development near Metro Stations and transit corridors. Mark defined the idea of a Champion District near Twinbrook Metro in the Rockville Pike Master Plan. The Twinbrook Quarter development is the first creation of a Champion District. This status allows the project to proceed without delay. Mark faced down strident opposition to this plan.
Mark is an active 71-year-old senior and is a long-time member of the Senior Center. He operated his business until November 2022 while serving on the City Council. Mark has been a strong supporter of Rockville's Villages program. On the Council he voted for the Senior Center expansion that included a new exercise room on a 3-2 approval. He also voted for a conduit bond that allowed the National Lutheran Home to raise money for their expansion, also a 3-2 approval. He regularly votes for maximum tax credits for seniors, and has championed a Senior Center expansion on the King Farm Farmstead. In the past 2 years Mark was a caregiver for 4 family members. He has become much more aware of the needs of the elderly. He continues as caregiver for his mother who recently moved to Rockville. These experiences further inform his support of Rockville Seniors.
Mark’s public service in Rockville started with his College Gardens neighborhood. He was a block captain, then Secretary and President from 2004 to 2008. As an officer of the Civic Association, Mark engaged with the City on the 2009 Zoning Ordinance revision and the transformation of College Gardens Park. He kept residents informed and effectively listened to accurately represent their concerns. Under Mark’s leadership, College Gardens was able to work with the City to change an industrial style stormwater design into a more attractive park and pond that doubles as a stormwater management system. The new park won national, regional, and City awards. During the zoning ordinance revision, College Gardens was one of only two neighborhoods that continuously engaged with the City and was able to change the zone for the nearby College Plaza. His Civic Association experiences continue to inform him as Councilmember. Mark protects our neighborhoods. In that respect, he led the initial opposition to harmful bus depots near the Carver Education Center and near Lincoln Park. Mark was the earliest and continues to be a standout leader in the successful opposition to the I-270 widening that would have harmed nine abutting neighborhoods and other nearby communities. His activism led to effective community involvement including the DontWiden270 group.
Mark has always been a leading supporter of effective community policing in Rockville. In addition to supporting the construction of the new Police Station on a crucial 3-2 vote, he voted for the Fostering Community Trust Ordinance (as part of another 3-2 vote) to better enable the Police and City Staff to work with all people in our Community. He votes for more Police staff positions as needed as well as for keeping Police pay scales competitive in the FY 2024 budget. Mark has been a strong supporter of our Police Chief’s efforts to modernize the Police Department.