Public weighs in on possible BRT on U.S. 29

  • Published in Local

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ROCKVILLE – There is little debate that traffic is one of the biggest issues in the County, but there is much debate on what to do about it.

Tuesday night, residents testified at the County Council on the County’s plan for a Bus Rapid Transit system on U.S. Route 29.

The proposed U.S. 29 BRT would be a 14-mile bus route that would quickly shuttle people up and down the East County while driving in both mixed traffic and on shoulder lanes. The proposed bus route would cost $31 million, $21.5 million coming from the County and $10 million coming from a U.S. Department of Transportation grant.

At the public hearing Tuesday night, reaction to the planned BRT was mixed. While most agreed there needs to be more transit options for commuters in the East County, residents are split on what that solution is.


Council closer to funding bus rapid transit in eastern county

  • Published in Local

If everything goes as planned, the East County will be one step closer to having a new alternative for commuters.

Last week, the Montgomery County Department of Transportation and the Maryland Transit Administration released a study on the proposed Bus Rapid Transit for U.S. Route 29.

Representatives from MCDOT and MTA spoke to the County Council Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee last week. The T & E committee did not vote on the proposal during its meeting last week.

The proposed BRT for Route 29 is part of a series of BRT lines the County is proposing – along with one on MD-355 and MD-586 – that it hopes will cut down on heavy traffic congestion in the County. The BRT would operate partially along the shoulder lanes as a quicker alternative to buses.


Rockville Council backs BRT plan on Veirs Mill

  • Published in Local

ROCKVILLE – The City Council voted in favor of a $148 million proposed plan to build curbside lanes dedicated to Bus Rapid Transit along Veirs Mill Road Monday.

However, the City Council’s vote is only a recommendation; county and state officials will ultimately determine what happens with the BRT project.

Council members Julie Palakovich Carr, Beryl Feinberg and Mark Pierzchala agreed to support one of three options up for consideration for adding BRT between Rockville and Wheaton Metro stations.


Leggett pushes BRT in eastern Montgomery

  • Published in Local

SILVER SPRING – Standing near one of the most congested corridors in Montgomery County Thursday, County Executive Ike Leggett (D) said routine rush-hour congestion is the reason local officials are heavily investing in Bus Rapid Transit (BRT).

“You can see the challenges of traffic even on a good day in the east part of the County,” said Leggett about rush-hour traffic on U.S. 29. “Think of the problems that many of us face when it’s snowing, when we have rain and when we have ice and all other kinds of challenges that we face each and every day.”

Leggett gathered Nov. 17 with Rep. John Sarbanes (D-3), Council member Roger Berliner (D-1) and Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman (R) to announce a naming contest for the BRT.


Rockville ponders BRT on Veirs Mill Road

  • Published in Local

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ROCKVILLE -- City Council members voiced support for adding Bus Rapid Transit to Veirs Mill Road Monday but they couldn't decide whether to formally endorse any particular alternative or a broader set of options.

Council members divided over whether they should tell Montgomery County and state transportation officials their preferred alternative among the four options for adding more mass transit options between Wheaton and Montgomery College's campus in Rockville.

They opted instead to mull it over for a week and vote Oct. 17.


Rockville studies BRT plans on Veirs Mill

  • Published in Local


ROCKVILLE – When state officials announce this December their preferred route for bringing Bus Rapid Transit to the MD-586 (Veirs Mill Road) corridor, they will chose among options costing between $23 million to $237 million.

City Council members will need to endorse a route connecting the Rockville and Wheaton Metro stations by this fall, though they may be able to push back a state-imposed Oct. 14 deadline, according to Andrew Gunning, the deputy director of Community Planning and Development Services for the city.

The most expensive option is for dedicating one to two BRT-only lanes in the median. That costs $118 million more than installing an extra lane on the right-hand side of the road in each direction. 

“We’re actually finding that this option, even though it costs twice as much as the outer curb lane option, it only generates about 1,000 more riders per day, so it’s not a big increase,” Gunning said to City Council members Monday.


Berliner 'skeptical' about Hogan's plan for tackling traffic woes

  • Published in Local

Montgomery County Council member Roger Berliner (D-1) said he is not sure Gov. Larry Hogan’s (R) call for adding $229 million for transportation infrastructure improvements will significantly alleviate traffic congestion in the area.

“I think many of us are skeptical that you can get a lot of change for $100 million,” said Berliner, a third-term council member who chairs the Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee. “The proof will be in the pudding, it’s an innovative approach.”


'There's a Convention?'

  • Published in State

Hogan skips GOP national convention to address MoCo traffic problems

Larry Hogan sunglasses 7-20-16Governor Larry Hogan       PHOTO BY NEAL EARLEY

POTOMAC – Calling Interstate 270 the “most congested, plagued corridor in all of Maryland,” Gov. Larry Hogan (R) announced the state government will spend $229.6 million to alleviate traffic on the highway.

Flanked by a Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and Council members Nancy Floreen (D-At large), Roger Berliner (D-1) and George Leventhal (D-At large) near I-270 in Potomac, Hogan said Maryland had the worst traffic in the nation.

“We inherited a state infrastructure that for eight years had been largely ignored and severely underfunded,” Hogan said.

“A billion dollars has been siphoned from the transportation trust fund and was spent on things totally unrelated to transportation. As a result we had crumbling roads and bridges and the worst traffic in the nation.”

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