William Kominers

Land Use and Zoning Attorney

Principal

wkominers@lerchearly.com
7600 Wisconsin AvenueSuite 700Bethesda, MD 20814

Education

  • The George Washington University Law School (J.D., with honors, 1977)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B. Architecture, 1974)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B.S. in Building Science, 1973), Tau Beta Pi

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court, District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
Overview

Land use and zoning attorney Bill Kominers navigates governmental processes to help companies achieve the best use of their properties in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

Bill’s idea of light reading on the weekend is scouring the footnotes of proposed new zoning codes. He is creative in using his exacting knowledge of land use law to shepherd developer and corporate clients through the approval process, crafting zoning solutions akin to selecting the correct rocks to traverse a stream.  Trained as an architect, Bill visualizes projects from blueprints to building. He communicates with planners and designers in their own language, translating detail into design with good-natured humor. Legal guide Chambers USA notes: “Clients praise [Bill] for having ‘a business sense that embraces collaboration.’”

For more than 35 years, Bill has represented developers and businesses before administrative agencies, legislative bodies, and courts in proceedings involving rezonings, master plan amendments, subdivisions, adequate public facilities examinations, site plan reviews, special exceptions, variances, and building and occupancy permits. He has particular skill guiding large-scale mixed-use developments through the full range of planning, zoning, and regulatory processes.

Bill also represents large office and industrial parks in general land use and legislative matters, including redevelopment, master planning, text amendments, and zoning and regulatory approvals. He has extensive experience with urban development projects, especially using optional zoning tools for increased densities and negotiation of design and amenities in the regulatory process. He has managed these projects in the central business districts of Bethesda, Silver Spring, Friendship Heights, and the City of Rockville.

When he’s not perusing zoning code, Montgomery County native Bill enjoys studying military history and playing bridge with a group of fellow Walt Whitman High School alums.

Education

  • The George Washington University Law School (J.D., with honors, 1977)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B. Architecture, 1974)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B.S. in Building Science, 1973), Tau Beta Pi

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court, District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
Education & Admissions

Education

  • The George Washington University Law School (J.D., with honors, 1977)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B. Architecture, 1974)
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B.S. in Building Science, 1973), Tau Beta Pi

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court, District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
Honors & Awards
  • Listed in Chambers USA Real Estate: Land Use (2008-present)
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America for Land Use & Zoning Law (2007-present)
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America for Real Estate Law (2008-present)
  • Listed in Super Lawyers Maryland (2007-present)
  • Listed in Super Lawyers DC (2007-present)
  • Listed in Super Lawyers Business Edition (2012- present)
  • Listed in Super Lawyers Corporate Counsel Edition (2009)
  • Ranked AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings
  • Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce “Silver Star” Chair’s Award (2017, 2016)
  • Maryland Building Industry Association (MBIA, formerly MNCBIA) “Outstanding Service to the Building Industry” (2012)
  • Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce Business Appreciation Award (2009)
  • Maryland Building Industry Association (MBIA, formerly MNCBIA) Joseph C. Rodgers, Sr. Memorial Award (MBIA’s highest non-builder award – 2005)
  • Maryland Building Industry Association (MBIA, formerly MNCBIA) Montgomery County Liaison “Over-and-Above” Award (2005)
  • Washingtonian Magazine Top Lawyers "Real Estate" (2017)
Community Involvement
  • ScienceMontgomery (Board of Directors, 2005-2014)
  • National Chamber Orchestra (past Vice Chair, Board of Directors)
  • The Harbor School (Co-President, 1992-1995, Board of Trustees 1991-1996) Leadership Montgomery (Class of 1996)
Professional Memberships
  • Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce (Board of Directors, 2007-2017; Economic Development Committee Chair, 2015-present and 2007-2011; Government Affairs Committee Chair, 2013-2015; Board Chair, 2011-2012)
  • Maryland Building Industry Association (Executive Committee, 2014-2015; Liaison Committee, past Chair; Development Review Process Subcommittee, past Chair and current member, late 1990s-present)
  • Silver Spring Urban District Advisory Board (past President)
  • Western Montgomery County Citizens Advisory Board (past Chair, Vice Chair)
  • Silver Spring Citizens Advisory Board (past Member)
  • Montgomery County Zoning Advisory Panel
  • Montgomery County Planning Board's Traffic Mitigation Issues Group
  • The George Washington University Law Alumni Association (past Director, DC Chapter Board)
  • Maryland State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of Montgomery County, Maryland
  • DC Bar Association
Insights

News

Success Stories
Representative Matters
  • Representing Lee Development Group in development of Elizabeth Square, a public-private partnership between Lee Development Group and the Montgomery County Housing Opportunities Commission. The mixed-use project in downtown Silver Spring will include retail and residential housing, including affordable senior units. http://www.leedg.com/property/elizabeth-square/
  • Part of team representing The Tower Companies in redevelopment of The Blairs, a community begun in the late 1950s in downtown Silver Spring, now reinventing itself to include 2,800 high-rise apartments and 450,000 SF of new mixed-used commercial space, all within a short walk of Metro. http://www.sasaki.com/project/306/the-blairs/
  • Representing United Therapeutics in creation and expansion of its headquarters campus in downtown Silver Spring. Approvals have included development of two campus office and laboratory buildings linked by a connector spanning 90 feet across a public street. Currently working on creation of a third building, an on-site net zero energy building, which will include solar panels, a green roof, a geothermal system, and a below-grade earth labyrinth system to support office, in silico laboratory, retail, and public space uses. http://www.bethesdamagazine.com/Bethesda-Beat/2015/Company-Hopes-to-Begin-Demolition-of-Silver-Spring-Parking-Garage-This-Fall/
  • Represented the Polinger Co. in development of 7600 Wisconsin Avenue, a 209,000 SF office building in downtown Bethesda that is part of Bethesda Place. https://www.polingerco.com/commercial-property/
  • As part of serving as ongoing land use counsel, represented the Tower Companies on the Tower Oaks planned development in the City of Rockville, most recently in developing 2000 Tower Oaks Boulevard, the first commercial office building to achieve LEED Platinum status. http://towercompanies.com/property-listings/?portfolioCats=69%2C22%2C23%2C68%2C21#tower-building
  • Represented Grosvenor in the conversion and upgrading of a Holiday Inn to a Courtyard by Marriott in Friendship Heights.
  • Represented the West*Group in development of the Westfarm Technology Park, and the West*Group and successors in transforming the large industrial park into a mixed-used development, including a hospital, retail, and restaurants.
  • Represented Abrams & Associates in development of 4800 Hampden Lane, a mixed-used development of an office and retail building, integrating townhomes along the streets in the Bethesda Central Business District.
  • Represented owners of the Apex Building in downtown Bethesda in a Minor Master Plan Amendment that positioned the building for sale to Carr Development in anticipation of construction of a Purple Line Metro station below the site. http://www.bethesdamagazine.com/Bethesda-Beat/2015/Could-Bethesdas-Apex-Building-Be-Razed-Before-Purple-Line-Construction-Starts/
  • Represented Lee Development Group in approvals, construction, and opening of The Fillmore, a public-private partnership with Montgomery County and Live Nation, which transformed the partial remains of a former J.C. Penney’s department store (including the original façade) located in a downtown Silver Spring historic district into a music, entertainment, and community use venue. http://www.fillmoresilverspring.com/venueinfo
  • Represented BioReliance in regulatory approvals for lab expansion and construction of a new office building as part of its headquarters expansion in the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center.

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