July Email Blast | Purple Line NOW - Update 2015



A Message from our Board

Governor Hogan's endorsement of the Purple Line project on June 25 fundamentally changed the status and progress of the project, which was largely in limbo since the November election. While his cost shifting strategy has resulted in some positioning and apparent controversy, the project at the state and local levels seems secure. The Governor conditioned his endorsement on continuing Federal support - this support will be provided over a number of years, and this Congress is not thinking long-term about transportation funding. On July 20, Governor Hogan called on the Maryland congressional delegation to assure the project's funding, and Purple Line NOW will continue to follow developments on Capitol Hill and keep you informed.
pln_crowd.jpg

 Crowd Gathers inside the future Purple Line Stop at the Dedication of
 the New Silver Spring Library


County Participation Update

Montgomery County Executive Leggett is continuing his local leadership on the project by committing an additional $40 million from Montgomery County - this to be provided in the out years - current conditions in the County make further early commitments infeasible. Prince George's County Executive Baker is firm in his support for the project and is affirming the County's $100 million in cash and $20 million in land and other contributions. Negotiations are still ongoing for the contribution from Prince George's county. No amount has been announced yet, but the Prince George's Sentinel paraphrased county's Deputy Chief Administrative Officer of Finance Tom Himler saying the Purple Line remains a critical priority for the county and "they will do whatever is necessary" to fund the project because of all of the economic benefits that could come from it.

Other News

Gov. Hogan's endorsement included a promised $250 million in cost savings, listing 41 items including increasing intervals between trains to 7.5 minutes from 6, less expensive architectural finishes on stations and retaining walls, 50% reduction in the public art budget, and removal of a green roadbed to help manage storm water. The last has alarmed some environmentally conscious residents of Chevy Chase. There was discussion at the July Chevy Chase Town Council meeting of using some of the $300,000 they had previously set aside to oppose the project, and use it instead for remediation.

The opening of the Silver Line in Virginia was welcomed by officials who credit growth around the stations to the project's planning and arrival. The Purple Line corridor is already far more walkable than many parts of Tyson's. Similar development activity has been apparent along the Purple Line and can be expected to increase, now that the project is moving forward.

Upcoming

The Request for Proposals for the Public-Private Partnership were amended in Mid-July to be submitted in November. Concessionaire selection is scheduled for January 2016, with construction to start later in the year (May 2016 if everything stays on schedule).

We have much to do and will remain as active as we have been throughout. The year's delay will doubtless result in cost increases. The Federal Transit Administration will reevaluate the project, reviewing proposed changes before committing to a Full Funding Agreement, the next big milestone. Construction will bring inconvenience and opportunity - Purple Line NOW will be active in identifying both. We look forward to your continuing engagement and support.

Donate

Purple Line NOW operates on a bare-bones budget and we appreciate every dollar donated to help make sure the line breaks ground and opens on time while remaining a quality project. Our new online donation page makes it easy to help: https://purplelinenow.nationbuilder.com/donate 


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  • published this page in e-Newsletters 2015-08-05 15:44:56 -0400

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