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Council to Take Positions on Local Transportation Projects

At tomorrow night’s Council meeting, the City Council will approve a letter to the Maryland Department of Transportation with comments about the regional projects directly affecting College Park.

Here is a list of projects and the position the council plans to take:

US 1, Baltimore Avenue from College Avenue to MD 193
The City is very pleased that this project has been moved to the construction program with the recent announcement of $33.4 million in construction funding. In practice, design and engineering will continue through 2018 and several critical design decisions are still pending. Chief among these are the amount of right-of-way to be taken and the locations for the aerial relocation of utilities since the undergrounding of utilities is not being pursued at this time.

More specifically, the City is concerned about the lack of a consistent and adequate buffer between the curb and the sidewalk where utility poles, street lights, ornamental trees and street furniture would be placed. If these elements are not placed within this buffer zone, it is unclear how new development will meet the urban streetscape standards in the US 1 Sector Plan. An illustrative diagram is attached to help visualize this issue.

The Route 1 corridor is a redevelopment area and many existing land uses are subject to change in the near future. It is important going forward to have a clear understanding of these issues and how they will be addressed in the final design. City staff would like to work more closely and actively with SHA’s staff and consultants in order to refine the design and keep this project on schedule.

I-95/I-495, Capital Beltway
The City supports the full interchange to make the proposed transit-oriented development at this location more feasible particularly for the FBI Headquarters Consolidation and Relocation. The City also concurs with the recommendation to eliminate proposed beltway lane widening from Route 1 to the new interchange

I-495 at US1 Interchange
The City is very interested in this new project that will provide safety improvements for the area. It will also directly impact a local street and local residents. The City would like to learn more about the genesis of this project and to be actively involved in the project design as it moves forward. City staff will be contacting the Project Manager in the near future to arrange a presentation of the project a City Council Worksession.

I-95/I-495, Capital Beltway Widening and Managed Lanes
The City does not support the widening of the Capital Beltway and would like to see this project dropped from the CTP. It is preferable to focus on more limited operational improvements in specific locations.

Purple Line
The City looks forward to the selection of a concessionaire this year under the P3 program and to working with the consultant team on final alignment and station design issues.

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