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Purple Line NOW News - July 3, 2019

Happy Fourth of July, a day early! We hope everyone enjoys a safe and celebratory holiday tomorrow.

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

  • Time is Running Out to Reserve Your Seat for the Next Purple Line NOW Forum - Completing the Capital Crescent Trail!
  • Silver Spring Transit Center Construction Update
  • A Wrap-Up of the Long Branch Community Advisory Team Meeting
  • Show Your Support by Becoming a Sponsor of Purple Line NOW - All Levels Welcome!

Reserve Your Seat for the Next Purple Line NOW Forum

When?   Thursday, July 25, 2019 from 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Where?  Lawton Community Center in Chevy Chase, 4301 Willow Lane, Chevy Chase, MD 20815
How?     RESERVE MY SEATYour Seat Must Be Reserved in Advance.

Plan to join us for this information-packed evening with a full slate of terrific panelists: 

  • The new CEO of the Purple Line Transit Partners, Peter van der Waart
  • Board Member of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association, Peter Gray
  • Montgomery County At-Large Councilmember, Hans Riemer
  • Montgomery County District 1 Councilmember, Andrew Friedson
  • Transportation Supervisor for the Montgomery County Planning Department, David Anspacher
  • Project Manager at the Montgomery County Department of Transportation

The event, as always, is free and open to the public, but seats must be reserved in advance due to space limitations – we have about 75 seats for both the public and the media and we are currently about two-thirds full. 

Please forward this email to anyone who may be interested in attending - trail users, community groups, and transit lovers alike! Please contact us at [email protected] with any questions.

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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.



So, What’s Going On at the Silver Spring Transit Center?

Here’s a brief update of recent, current, and upcoming work at the Silver Spring Transit Center (SSTC).

Photo Courtesy of MDOT MTA Purple Line Project

If your commute takes you near the SSTC, you may have noticed fencing being installed around the perimeter of the Center. The installation, begun in mid-June, was placed to establish the Purple Line Transit Constructors (PLTC) initial work zone (Phase 1).

The graphic below explains the parameters (and perimeter) of the work and pedestrian detour.

Photo Courtesy of MDOT MTA Purple Line Project

Residents and workers who are signed up to receive notifications of impending construction were sent alerts regarding the mobilization of materials and equipment into the work zone to prepare for upcoming construction activities which are now underway. 

"Beginning on or about June 10, 2019, crews will implement several work zones adjacent to the Paul S. Sarbanes Transit Center in numerous phases. Phase I, effective on or about Monday, June 10, will impact pedestrian access. Wayfinding signage will be posted around the work zone. Work will take place during two shifts from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 a.m. on weekdays and weekends. The work zones can be viewed here: Long-Term Work Zone Pedestrian Detour."

If you are not signed up for these notices from PLTP, you can do so here: Construction Updates.

Although we hope to have more specifics when the phasing plans are set, this summer work will start on the foundations for the Purple Line LRT and Capital Crescent Trail bridges over Colesville Road.

Communications Specialist for Purple Line Transit Constructors, Natalie Lackey, commented, “The Purple Line team has coordinated extensively with WMATA and Montgomery County, especially regarding public outreach efforts.” Ms. Lackey highlighted the many ways PLTC is trying to reach out to residents and workers alike, "distributing specific updates like the one above and producing 5,000 hard copy fact sheets (in both English and Spanish) handed out by the Silver Spring Urban District’s Red Shirt street team."

There is plenty of way-making signage on the fencing itself, but prior to the fence installation, additional A-frame signage was placed around the perimeter to alert pedestrians of the impending construction.

Photos Courtesy of MDOT MTA Purple Line Project

Let us know if you have more questions about the Silver Spring Transit Center. We’ll try to get the answers for you! If you want to read more, here is a link to a Source of the Spring article: Déjà Vu For Silver Spring Commuters as Fencing is Installed.

Highlights from the Long Branch Community Advisory Team Meeting

The Long Branch Community Advisory Team meeting took place on June 19 at Oak View Elementary School. While the excavation of the Plymouth Tunnel itself is complete, much work remains to install the concrete base slab, waterproofing liner, and ultimately the track bed. Work also continues on both ends of the tunnel with cut and cover excavation of the transition from the tunnel to the street level exit onto Arliss Street and the start of work to lay the concrete that will form the structure of the Manchester Place station. That strain will be located where there is now a large work site off Wayne Avenue.

Photo Courtesy of Maryland Department of Transportation

Other construction activity includes utility relocation and tree clearing along Wayne Avenue. As Purple Line Transit Partners’ former CEO Fred Craig had explained at the Purple Line NOW forum held last January in College Park, the extent of clearing is driven by the choice to run more current through the overhead wires that will power the trains. This change reduced the number of transmission substations necessary and helped the winning bid meet Governor Hogan's cost saving goals. However, as a side effect, electrical standards mandate a greater clearance around the elevated wires.

Finally, construction efforts in the next six months will affect traffic flows on Arliss Street and crews will work their way north on Piney Branch to University Boulevard. Business outreach efforts are ramping up during this period, so please remember to visit your local favorite retailers and restaurants who may be affected by construction. 

On a lighter note, the project team presented details on one of our favorite art installations.

Photo Courtesy of Purple Line Transit Partners

The Manchester Place station is at the portal of the tunnel and the enclosed platform will have illumination from prisms in the ceiling that evoke the colors of the numerous flags of nations represented in the surrounding community. While only active when the sun is shining, a neat feature of the installation is that even a commuter that boards every day at the same time will see different displays based on the seasons and weather!

The Long Branch station at Arliss Street will feature a towering "Our Lady of the Branch" abstract statue that will aid in both establishing the stop as a distinctive and memorable space and also help with waiting for those headed to the station.

The Piney Branch and University station artwork rounded out this CAT presentation with bold colors and abstract shapes, patterned to evoke maps and mazes and to give passengers interesting designs to contemplate while waiting for a train. 

Click on this link to see all of the CAT docs: Long Branch CAT Meeting #4.



Next Forum: Completing the Capital Crescent Trail

Don't forget to reserve your seat for this informative evening (see above). This is the first time we will be focusing solely on the Capital Crescent Trail! And, we have a brilliant panel of experts to get us up to speed on what is currently happening on the trail and what we can expect down the road (or, in this case, trail...!)



Purple Line NOW Needs Your Sponsorship Today

Sponsorship is another way to help Purple Line NOW continue our efforts to bring you important Purple Line related news and information via our newsletters, outreach, and public events. Our organization has been around for a long time and is almost entirely run by dedicated volunteers. We don't hold big fundraisers and we do not receive underwriting grants from any source, government (local or otherwise), nor are we a membership organization (we do not ask for annual dues). We operate solely on donations from individuals and businesses who care about the Purple Line and whose generosity allow us to continue our work.

If you need more information before you push the donate button, we sent out a request a few weeks ago that will give you a good, in-depth idea of how hard we make your donations dollars work. Click here to read all about what we do with your donations!

All levels of sponsorships are welcomed and appreciated!

As always, we are happy to share financial information about our operating expenses and our income. Just shoot us an email or give us a call. When we say we do a lot on a skinny budget, we mean it. We try to only ask for donations when our bank account gets low enough to make our treasurer nervous - and that is usually around the $3,000 mark.  

We hope you will consider joining the sponsors already on board (you can see these awesome folks here) – and remember, with your donation, your name (or your business name) will be listed on our website and in event literature and signage for a year following your donation.

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