CommunityWilliam J. Ford

Md. Board Moves Ahead with Beltway Expansion Plan

ANNAPOLIS — Maryland Board of Public Works voted Wednesday to move ahead and seek bids for a private firm to participate in a public-private partnership for a proposal to expand Interstates 495 and 270 in Prince George’s and Montgomery counties.

One of the three board members, state Treasurer Nancy Kopp, voted against the move in need of more information such as a more detailed financial and environmental analyses.

“I have been concerned all along about this huge project and voting on it without being able to see any of the background numbers,” Kopp said.

One aspect Kopp and other project opponents sought before a vote stemmed from an environmental impact statement to outline how noise, construction and pollution would affect the 70-mile stretch.

John Townsend II, spokesman for AAA Mid-Atlantic, testifies before the Maryland Board of Public Works on June 5 in Annapolis about his organization's support of a project to expand and add toll lanes along Interstates 495 and 270. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)
John Townsend II, spokesman for AAA Mid-Atlantic, testifies before the Maryland Board of Public Works on June 5 in Annapolis about his organization’s support of a project to expand and add toll lanes along Interstates 495 and 270. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)

The state Department of Transportation outlined six alternatives to add toll lanes.

The three-phase project was slightly amended by Gov. Larry Hogan and state Comptroller Peter Franchot, who voted in favor to continue work on the estimated $11 billion project.

Hogan slightly amended the traffic relief plan to first begin work on I-270 in Montgomery County just north of I-370. More work along I-270 would be done heading north to Frederick County.

The second phase now proposed would conduct work in Montgomery County along I-495 west toward the George Washington Memorial Parkway at the American Legion Bridge in Montgomery County.

A third and final phase starts on I-495 in Prince George’s County heading south to the Branch Avenue exit in Temple Hills. However, more analysis would be done from that exit to the Woodrow Wilson Bridge outside National Harbor, but the state Department of Transportation would need to work in conjunction with officials across the Potomac River in Virginia.

According to a draft of the project, work along I-495 west toward the bridge in Montgomery County was originally marked as the first phase. Several county residents sought the importance of I-270 as more vital and seen as the most congested area in the region.

“I think it is a huge response to a lot of the individual concerns that have been made by those opposed to this currently,” Franchot said.

During the three-hour portion of the meeting that strictly focused on this project, Hogan questioned some of the opponents’ comments and had slight discontent toward Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich.

“We are not saying, ‘No, don’t do anything.’ We are saying, ‘Work with us,'” Elrich said. “I wouldn’t expect you to surrender when I say something. Don’t expect me to surrender when you say something. Let’s work together.”

Tags
Show More

William J. Ford – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I decided I wanted to become a better writer while attending Bowie State University and figured that writing for the school newspaper would help. I’m not sure how much it helped, but I enjoyed it so much I decided to keep on doing it, which I still thoroughly enjoy 20 years later. If I weren’t a journalist, I would coach youth basketball. Actually, I still play basketball, or at least try to play, once a week. My kryptonite is peanut butter. What makes me happy – seeing my son and two godchildren grow up. On the other hand, a bad call made by an official during a football or basketball game makes me throw up my hands and scream. Favorite foods include pancakes and scrambled eggs which I could eat 24-7. The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me, or more accurately the most painful, was when I was hit by a car on Lancaster Avenue in Philadelphia. If I had the power or money to change the world, I’d make sure everyone had three meals a day. And while I don’t have a motto or favorite quote, I continue to laugh which keeps me from driving myself crazy. You can reach me several ways: Twitter @jabariwill, Instagram will_iam.ford2281 or e-mail, wford@washingtoninformer.com

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker
%d bloggers like this: