Purple Line NOW News - October 6, 2021

In today's edition of Purple Line NOW News, here's what you'll find:

  • What's Happening at PLN?
  • Purple Line in the News
  • Features & Highlights
    • Who Are All These Groups and What Do They Do?!
    • The New Carrollton Economic Development Strategy
    • Ride-On Reimagined Study
    • PLCC Small Business Plan
    • Purple Line (Model) Light Rail Vehicle on the Move!
  • Construction News
    • Photos Around the Purple Line Corridor

Share This Newsletter

Please feel free to share this newsletter - no permission from us needed! You can always find a link to our newsletter on our Purple Line NOW website which makes it easy to share with your friends, neighbors, constituents, customers, and employees.

What' Happening

   WHAT'S HAPPENING AT PLN?

Happy October!

We hope you are enjoying the autumn season! This newsletter is jam-packed with all sorts of information from around the corridor and, while we wait for a big announcement about the selection of a new builder, some photos of the progress that is being made to move those pesky (and voluminous!) utilities. We are encouraged to see so much work going on. When you are out and about, snap a few photos of Purple Line progress and we just might print them!

Please Help Us Continue Our Work

Each year, we ask you to consider a donation to Purple Line NOW which helps us continue to offer events like our online webinars which are always free of charge to all participants, as well as this information-packed newsletter, along with answering many of your questions and staying on top of what is going on throughout our corridor as it relates to the project as a whole.

Purple Line NOW was fortunate enough to be the recipient of a generous matching donor last winter and you stepped up to help us during that campaign which has seen us through a difficult year. It will be time to ask anew in the fall, so we hope at that time, if you are able, you will consider supporting us with a financial donation.

We do not host special event fundraisers, nor do we receive underwriting grants from any source, government (local or otherwise), nor are we a membership organization (we do not ask for annual dues). We rely solely on support from donors like YOU!

Remember, with your donation, your name (or your business name) will be listed on our website, as well as in event literature and signage for a year following your donation.

As always, a great big thank you to ALL OF OUR DONORS! We simply could not do our work without your support. If you don't see your name on our website link, you can donate by clicking the purple button below.

Thank you, thank you! Especially after the year from which we are all slowly emerging, a great big THANK YOU!

DONATE

 

PL in the News

   THE PURPLE LINE IN THE NEWS

New Purple Line contractor should be in place by February (K. Shaver, Washington Post, September 8, 2021)

Features and Highlights

   FEATURES & HIGHLIGHTS

Who Are All These Groups and What Do They Do?

Confused by all the acronyms surrounding the Purple Line?! We’ve updated the list we published a few years ago (things have changed a bit!) and thought we would reshare this short glossary of some of the most frequently used acronyms and terms and how Purple Line NOW relates to each of them. 

1) PLN (Purple Line NOW)

Since you are already receiving our newsletter, you probably know all about us, but just as a refresher, PLN was incorporated in 2002, though many on our team have worked on behalf of the Purple Line for a decade or two before that!

We are a coalition of business, labor, environment, neighborhood, and civic organizations that work with local, state, and federal government officials in pursuit of our mission to build the Purple Line. Our mission is to ensure the completion of the Purple Line from Bethesda to New Carrollton, integrated with a hiker/biker trail between Bethesda & Silver Spring. We have one quarter-time executive director, but operate mostly on the elbow grease of a large and dedicated team of volunteers. We are governed by a Board of Directors with balanced representation from each county along the corridor.

2) CATs (Community Advisory Teams)

MTA has divided the 16-mile Purple Line corridor into eight areas, each represented by a Community Advisory Team (CAT). The MDOT MTA has committed to maintaining open dialogue with the communities surrounding the Purple Line via CATs with the objective of building a long-term relationship through completion of the project. The CATs are member-driven teams with representatives appointed from neighborhood and civic associations adjacent to the alignment. There are also representatives from business associations and local governments. Purple Line NOW Board and Team members sit on many of these CATs and bring information back to our organization regarding issues and hurdles a particular community might be experiencing. In the past two years, MDOT MTA has scheduled these meetings in the spring and fall, and in light of the pandemic, over the past year, has hosted them online. Materials, questions, and answers, from each meeting are usually available online and Purple Line NOW News tries to publish the highlights from each meeting in its biweekly newsletter.

3) MDOT MTA & the Purple Line Team

The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is the lead agency, the Purple Line’s owner, and they work in close coordination with other transportation entities, governments, and parks and planning commissions. For the Purple Line, MTA works closely with Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, Montgomery and Prince George's counties, the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, the Maryland State Highway Administration, and local municipalities in the project area. If you have concerns or questions, you can email them directly at [email protected].

4) P3 (Public-Private Partnership)

In this case, a P3 is essentially a partnership between MTA and PLTP to build and operate the Purple Line. The main benefit to using a P3 model is the private capital and alignment of concessionaire incentives with reduced costs and better performance while giving more flexibility to efficiently build and operate the line.

5) PLCC (Purple Line Corridor Coalition)

The Purple Line Corridor Coalition (PLCC), formed in 2013, is a multi-sector collaborative led and administered by the University of Maryland’s National Center for Smart Growth (NCSG) in partnership with a coalition of community organizations, state and local governments, nonprofits, philanthropies, and businesses. Purple Line NOW is a separate entity (we receive no funding from PLCC), but we work closely with them, along with many other organizations, to achieve the goals set out in the Agreement. Two years ago, Maryland received a $2 million federal grant to help work on some of the goals of the Agreement, especially in the area of economic development, accessibility to the Purple Line stations, and keeping housing affordable along the Purple Line Corridor. NCSG will administer the grant.

6) PLTP (Purple Line Transit Partners)

PLTP is a public-private partnership (P3) who will build, operate and maintain the Purple Line. The team will operate and maintain the Purple Line for 30 years after opening. The entity is responsible for designing, building, operating, and maintaining the Purple Line under the supervision of the owner, the state of Maryland. The term "concessionaire" is used because it is a public-private partnership between Maryland and a consortium of companies rather than a single lead vendor. The concessionaire for this project is Purple Line Transit Partners.

Have any questions about who handles what aspect of the design, construction, or maintenance of the line - or anything else Purple Line-related, for that matter? Just drop us an email ([email protected]) and we'll find an answer for you!

New Carrollton Economic Development Strategy

The New Carrollton Economic Development Strategy is now complete and available online! This completed PAMC project highlights steps the city can take to support existing businesses and attract new ones. 

Ride-On Reimagined Study

Montgomery County is working to conduct a Ride-On Reimagined study, one aspect of which is re-imaging how the network will be revised to incorporate and extend the reach of the Purple Line. The county is seeking public comments by November 1 on a “Comprehensive Bus Network Study.” The study’s goal is to provide significant recommended changes to better serve transit users.

According to their website, the county is requesting feedback for a new Ride On Reimagined study. The study will “determine guiding principles for a comprehensive assessment of the bus network in the County, including County Ride On buses, Metrobus services that operate within the County limits and the future Purple Line.”

“To have an effective transit system that reflects the needs of our riders, we need to hear from all of our community members,” said County Department of Transportation Director Chris Conklin. This study will shape Montgomery County’s transportation services for years to come. We are asking our riders to help shape the future of our transportation network.”

Residents also can email comments to [email protected]. Written comments can be submitted to Montgomery County Department of Transportation, Division of Transit Services, Executive Office Building, 101 Monroe Street, 5th Floor, Rockville, MD, 20850.

PLCC Small Business Plan

The PLCC published their small business action plan. They're looking at short through long term plans. These areas include Greater Riverdale, communities along University Boulevard including Northern Gateway and Langley Park, Long Branch, Bonifant Street and Fenton Village in Silver Spring, and the Brookville Road Business District in Lyttonsville. There are an estimated 830 micro-businesses within 1/2 mile and 513 micro-businesses within 1/4 mile of these stations.

Purple Line (Model) Light Rail Vehicle on the Move!

Right now you can see the Purple Line Light Rail Vehicle model at the Long Branch Library. If your library or municipal building in either Prince George's or Montgomery County would like to host the model, contact the Purple Line Outreach Team at [email protected]!

 

Construction Updates

   CONSTRUCTION UPDATES

Photos from Around the Corridor

Crews continue to work hard throughout the corridor. Thanks to MDOT MTA for the photos.


 

Stay Connected

   STAY CONNECTED

Get Connected

Make sure you are signed up for timely alerts from Purple Line NOW via our Twitter and Facebook pages, and at our website Purple Line NOW.

Facebook Twitter

Purple Line NOW News - September 22, 2021

In today's edition of Purple Line NOW News, here's what you'll find:

  • What's Happening at PLN?
  • Purple Line in the News
  • Features & Highlights
    • Purple Line (Model) Light Rail Vehicle on the Move!
    • The Purple Line and the Local Business Community
    • Suggestions for Next Purple Line NOW Forum
  • Construction News
    • More Information on the Constructor Hiring and Schedule
    • Photos Around the Purple Line Corridor

Share This Newsletter

Please feel free to share this newsletter - no permission from us needed! You can always find a link to our newsletter on our Purple Line NOW website which makes it easy to share with your friends, neighbors, constituents, customers, and employees.

What' Happening

   WHAT'S HAPPENING AT PLN?

Please Help Us Continue Our Work

Each year, we ask you to consider a donation to Purple Line NOW which helps us continue to offer events like our online webinars which are always free of charge to all participants, as well as this information-packed newsletter, along with answering many of your questions and staying on top of what is going on throughout our corridor as it relates to the project as a whole.

Purple Line NOW was fortunate enough to be the recipient of a generous matching donor last winter and you stepped up to help us during that campaign which has seen us through a difficult year. It will be time to ask anew in the fall, so we hope at that time, if you are able, you will consider supporting us with a financial donation.

We do not host special event fundraisers, nor do we receive underwriting grants from any source, government (local or otherwise), nor are we a membership organization (we do not ask for annual dues). We rely solely on support from donors like YOU!

Remember, with your donation, your name (or your business name) will be listed on our website, as well as in event literature and signage for a year following your donation.

As always, a great big thank you to ALL OF OUR DONORS! We simply could not do our work without your support. If you don't see your name on our website link, you can donate by clicking the purple button below.

Thank you, thank you! Especially after the year from which we are all slowly emerging, a great big THANK YOU!

 

PL in the News

   THE PURPLE LINE IN THE NEWS

New Purple Line contractor should be in place by February (K. Shaver, Washington Post, September 8, 2021)

Purple Line payment is approved; Contractor Timeline Slides to 2022 (B. DuPuyt, WTOP, September 16, 2021)

Features and Highlights

   FEATURES & HIGHLIGHTS

Purple Line (Model) Light Rail Vehicle on the Move!

Right now you can see the Purple Line Light Rail Vehicle model at the Long Branch Library. If your library or municipal building in either Prince George's or Montgomery County would like to host the model, contact the Purple Line Outreach Team at [email protected]urplelinemd.com!

The Purple Line and Local Business Communities

In case you missed this in our prior newsletters, the Maryland Purple Line project management office is standing up a Business Engagement Team. If you have a business along the line or know someone who does, the team is available to help foster relationships. The team consists of:

  • Lesli Leath, Business Relationship Manager, [email protected], 1-240-695-9269
  • Minh Diep, Business Engagement Officer for Montgomery County, [email protected], 1-551-206-5889
  • Marlene Veras, Business Engagement Officer for Prince George’s County, [email protected], 1-443-802-1608

What Would You Like to See At the Next Purple Line NOW Forum?

We are beginning to think about the next Purple Line NOW forum, set to occur sometime later this fall. What would you like to know more about? General updates? Specific focus areas? Campus and the Purple Line highlights? Send your ideas to [email protected] and we'll try to make it happen! 

Construction Updates

   CONSTRUCTION UPDATES

More Information on the Constructor Hiring and Schedule

Just as Purple Line NOW News went to press two weeks ago, news broke in the Washington Post announcing that the new project builder should be chosen by the end of the year and in place by February.

We have seen more great reporting, this time from Maryland Matters, on updates to the Purple Line constructor selection process approved at the September 15 Maryland Board of Public Works meeting. As we covered in our last newsletter, the plan is for the new constructor to be in place by mid-February with bids from the three competitors due later in September.

Maryland Secretary of Transportation, Gregory Slater reported that all three bidders, Halmar International, Maryland Transit Solutions (a joint venture of Dragados USA and OHL USA), and Tutor-Perini/Lunda had requested additional time to understand the existing work. The state also is prepaying a $313 million private activity bond to smooth the way for the selection process.

According to the article, Secretary Slater explained that, "today the banks have final sign-off on the builder that we select. Our interest is in the best long-term success of the project — and that doesn’t always align with the bondholders." The state will have to pay a prepayment penalty, but does not expect any net increase in costs because of lower interest rates. In the meantime, the state will continue to conduct construction activities like utility relocation that keep the project moving forward and reduce risks, and thus encourage lower bids from the three competitors.

Purple Line NOW supports the emphasis that Secretary Slater and the Board of Public Works put on making sure the incentives are right for picking a construction partner. PLN Vice President Greg Sanders noted "In choosing a new constructor, Maryland and the consortium have to balance cost, technical capacity, and the time to opening day. Taking some time to get this right and removing potential obstacles makes sense, and the ongoing construction work led by the Purple Line project team shows that the state is continuing to make progress and reduce risk." PLN President Ralph Bennett added, "Maryland remains rightly committed to completing the Purple Line and the new residences and developments along the line, even in these trying circumstances, show the wisdom of that commitment. We will have high expectations of the new builder as they finish this line that is vital for our communities and minimize the disruption resulting from this prolonged process."

Photos from Around the Corridor

Crews continue to work hard throughout the corridor. Thanks to MDOT MTA for the photos.




Stay Connected

   STAY CONNECTED

Get Connected

Make sure you are signed up for timely alerts from Purple Line NOW via our Twitter and Facebook pages, and at our website Purple Line NOW.

Facebook Twitter

Purple Line NOW News - September 8, 2021

In today's edition of Purple Line NOW News, here's what you'll find:

  • What's Happening at PLN?
  • Purple Line in the News
    • New Purple Line Contractor in Place by February
  • Features & Highlights
    • The Purple Line and the Local Business Community
    • Draft -- Six Year Consolidated Transportation Budget
    • Suggestions for Next Purple Line NOW Forum
  • Construction News
    • Navigating Construction at the University of Maryland
    • Pedestrian and Worker Safety
    • Landscaping Plans at Purple Line Stations
    • Meet Chevy Chase Artist Heidi Lippman
    • Photos Around the Purple Line Corridor

Share This Newsletter

Please feel free to share this newsletter - no permission from us needed! You can always find a link to our newsletter on our Purple Line NOW website which makes it easy to share with your friends, neighbors, constituents, customers, and employees.

What' Happening

   WHAT'S HAPPENING AT PLN?

Please Help Us Continue Our Work

Each year, we ask you to consider a donation to Purple Line NOW which helps us continue to offer events like our online webinars which are always free of charge to all participants, as well as this information-packed newsletter, along with answering many of your questions and staying on top of what is going on throughout our corridor as it relates to the project as a whole.

Purple Line NOW was fortunate enough to be the recipient of a generous matching donor last winter and you stepped up to help us during that campaign which has seen us through a difficult year. It will be time to ask anew in the fall, so we hope at that time, if you are able, you will consider supporting us with a financial donation.

We do not host special event fundraisers, nor do we receive underwriting grants from any source, government (local or otherwise), nor are we a membership organization (we do not ask for annual dues). We rely solely on support from donors like YOU!

Remember, with your donation, your name (or your business name) will be listed on our website, as well as in event literature and signage for a year following your donation.

As always, a great big thank you to ALL OF OUR DONORS! We simply could not do our work without your support. If you don't see your name on our website link, you can donate by clicking the purple button below.

Thank you, thank you! Especially after the year from which we are all slowly emerging, a great big THANK YOU!

 

PL in the News

   THE PURPLE LINE IN THE NEWS

New Purple Line contractor should be in place by February (K. Shaver, Washington Post, September 8, 2021)

Features and Highlights

   FEATURES & HIGHLIGHTS

The Purple Line and Local Business Communities

In case you missed this in our prior newsletter, the Maryland Purple Line project management office is standing up a Business Engagement Team. If you have a business along the line or know someone who does, the team is available to help foster relationships. The team consists of:

  • Lesli Leath, Business Relationship Manager, [email protected], 1-240-695-9269
  • Minh Diep, Business Engagement Officer for Montgomery County, [email protected], 1-551-206-5889
  • Marlene Veras, Business Engagement Officer for Prince George’s County, [email protected], 1-443-802-1608

Draft -- Six Year Consolidated Transportation Budget

Last week, the Governor and MDOT released a draft of the six year consolidated transportation budget. You can read the entire draft of the report here: 2022 State Report on Transportation. With regard to the Purple Line project, Delegate Marc Korman (District 16) said via Twitter that, “the budget would increases short-term spending on the Purple Line by paying the rest of the construction settlement immediately instead of financing it and continuing work while the P3 partner looks for a new construction partner, which the Dept claims could be ID'ed before the end of the year.”

What Would You Like to See At the Next Purple Line NOW Forum?

We are beginning to think about the next Purple Line NOW forum, set to occur sometime later this fall. What would you like to know more about? General updates? Specific focus areas? Campus and the Purple Line highlights? Send your ideas to [email protected] and we'll try to make it happen! 

Construction Updates

   CONSTRUCTION UPDATES

Navigating Construction at the University of Maryland

With schools starting across our region, including at the University of Maryland, here’s a quick overview of how to navigate some of the campus construction going on in College Park. A quick date on one very important change students will see upon arrival at the College Park campus -- according to the University’s website, “Those driving onto campus at its main entrance will quickly realize a campus landmark has been relocated. The M Circle, which was at the intersection of Campus and Regent Drives, was moved across the street and is now adjacent to the Mitchell Building. The change was precipitated by the Purple Line light rail project.”

Pedestrian and Worker Safety

Pedestrian and worker safety around the Purple Line, both during construction and after completion must remain a top priority. We were saddened by the news of the passing of a pedestrian struck on University Boulevard and will continue to watch safety issues both in the alignment itself and in the surrounding roads.

Landscaping Plans at Purple Line Stations

Want to know more about landscaping plans for a variety of Purple Line stations? Check out the plans on the MDOT MTA website.

Meet Chevy Chase Artist Heidi Lippman

Have you seen this video yet featuring an artist who created one of the Art-In-Transit installations? Chevy Chase artist Heidi Lippman's contribution to the Connecticut Avenue station will be a multi-colored glass installation harkening back to the history of the area. In the video, Lippman says she created the installation “as an homage to what was there” and that colors and shades of the installation will change with the seasons, the time of day, and the weather. Check out the video to see the colorful renderings for this station.

Photos from Around the Corridor

Crews continue to work hard throughout the corridor. Thanks to MDOT MTA for the photos.

Stay Connected

   STAY CONNECTED

Get Connected

Make sure you are signed up for timely alerts from Purple Line NOW via our Twitter and Facebook pages, and at our website Purple Line NOW.

Facebook Twitter

Purple Line NOW News - August 11, 2021

We hope you are finding some time to relax and recharge, especially after the year we have all just experienced. Purple Line NOW News will back in September after a short break, but rest assured, if there is any news to report over the next few weeks, we'll bring it to you pronto!

Thank you for all of your support during this tough time. We are encouraged to see progress happening throughout the corridor, despite the hurdles. Before we head out for a few weeks, we leave you with a lagniappe or two, as well as some progress photos from the MDOT MTA team.

Have a wonderful and safe rest of your summer!

A Brief Update from MDOT MTA

Last month, the Purple Line Project team briefed the Purple Line NOW board on project updates. The submission deadline for the three competitors to be the new Purple Line builder is now September 27. The concessionaire's preferred choice should be shared with Maryland in late October or early November, with the final choice anticipated to go before the Board of Public Works by early December. The new design-builder should then be operating in early 2022. In the meantime, Maryland remains busy with utility relocation and other work. We already reported on the good news on the Sleaford Road pedestrian underpass in our last newsletter, while in Prince George's County, the College Park bus loop is another key step the state is prioritizing to complete on its own. The completion of the Talbot Avenue bridge will await the new builder’s hiring.

Ending the Summer on a High Note (Fingers Crossed!)

The bipartisan infrastructure bill appears to be on the way to passage and it will bring good news for transit in our region. The bill includes funding for the Capital Improvement Grants that are the source of federal Purple Line funding. The bill also has provisions for a $150 million boost to Metrorail through 2030, including renewing the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act to bring funding stability. Finally, the bill reopens the door to the Baltimore Red Line by "ensuring consideration" of projects that had once earned Federal Transit Administration support.

You can read more in the Washington Post: Infrastructure bill would boost Metro funding, reopen door to Baltimore’s Red Line project

Share This Newsletter

Please feel free to share this newsletter - no permission from us needed! You can always find a link to our newsletter on our Purple Line NOW website which makes it easy to share with your friends, neighbors, constituents, customers, and employees.

What' Happening

   WHAT'S HAPPENING AT PLN?


Please Help Us Continue Our Work

As we gear up for a busy fall season, we will once again be asking you to consider a donation to Purple Line NOW which will help us continue to offer events like our online webinars which are always free of charge to all participants, as well as this information-packed newsletter, along with answering many of your questions and staying on top of what is going on throughout our corridor as it relates to the project as a whole.

Purple Line NOW was fortunate enough to be the recipient of a generous matching donor last winter and you stepped up to help us during that campaign which has seen us through a difficult year. It will be time to ask anew in the fall, so we hope at that time, if you are able, you will consider supporting us with a financial donation.

We do not host special event fundraisers, nor do we receive underwriting grants from any source, government (local or otherwise), nor are we a membership organization (we do not ask for annual dues). We rely solely on support from donors like YOU!

Remember, with your donation, your name (or your business name) will be listed on our website, as well as in event literature and signage for a year following your donation.

As always, a great big thank you to ALL OF OUR DONORS! We simply could not do our work without your support. If you don't see your name on our website link, you can donate by clicking the purple button below. 

Thank you, thank you! Especially after the year from which we are all slowly emerging, a great big THANK YOU!

 

Construction Updates

   CONSTRUCTION UPDATES


Photos from Around the Corridor

Purple Line NOW would like to take a moment to thank the hardworking Purple Line Project team and their crews for their diligent and careful work during these hot summer months!

Stay Connected

   STAY CONNECTED

Get Connected

Make sure you are signed up for timely alerts from Purple Line NOW via our Twitter and Facebook pages, and at our website Purple Line NOW.

Facebook Twitter


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