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
- Thank you to Kevin Quinn
- Governor Hogan Vetoes Purple Line Marketing Funding
- Community Advisory Team Meetings
- Construction News
- University Boulevard and Silver Spring CAT Meeting Highlights
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WHAT'S HAPPENING AT PLN?
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THE PURPLE LINE IN THE NEWS
Maryland administrator who oversaw Purple Line construction is chosen to lead Vancouver transit agency (K. Shaver, May 19, 2021 Washington Post)
Maryland Transit Chief Looking Forward to New Gig in Vancouver (B. DePuyt, May 22, 2021 Maryland Matters)
FEATURES & HIGHLIGHTS
Maryland Transit Administrator Kevin Quinn Leaves Post
We would like to take this opportunity to thank Maryland Transit Administrator Kevin Quinn for his work on the Purple Line during his tenure here, especially through the last few rocky years. We wish him well in his new role as Chief Executive Officer of Vancouver's transit agency, TransLink, in British Columbia. MTA's deputy administrator Holly Arnold will serve as acting administrator until Quinn’s replacement is named.
Governor Hogan Vetoes Purple Line Marketing Funding
Last week, Governor Hogan vetoed SB 97, from Maryland State Senator Rosapepe that would have funded $500,000 for Purple Line marketing. The bill would have required the state to begin marketing the Purple Line light rail project in Prince George’s and Montgomery counties to highlight and promote the coming line. Governor Hogan said that he felt the funding was premature and that “MDOT has in-depth experience with developing marketing plans for major transit projects,” adding that he was “confident that their team is developing a superior plan for the Purple Line."
Governor Hogan also vetoed other bills that set aside specific funding for other transit systems including the Transit Investment and Safety Act on Friday and earlier in May, a proposed expansion of MARC rail service.
We are disappointed in the veto of Senator Rosapepe's bill, but we are encouraged by the outreach and accessibility of the MDOT MTA Purple Line team and look forward to hearing more about their marketing plans as the new builder is brought on board and the project continues to move forward.
Community Advisory Team Meetings Scheduled for Spring/Summer 2021
MDOT MTA is conducting Round 8 of the CAT meetings which began in May and will run through this month. As always, we will bring you highlights, but you should definitely check out the published notes or video from those meetings if you live or work in one of these communities:
Riverdale/New Carrollton: June 3, 6:30 pm
Bethesda/Chevy Chase: June 8, 6:30 pm
Long Branch: June 15, 6:30 pm
College Park: June 22, 6:30 pm
Greater Lyttonsville/Woodside: June 29, 6:30 pm
Community Advisory Team Meeting Highlights
We are excited to see the Community Advisory Teams (CATs) begin the spring meetings! We offer you this brief overview of some of the highlights from the two meetings that have been held to date. To view the full presentations, we encourage you to visit their webpage.
Matthew Pollack Executive Director, Transit Development and Delivery, Vernon G. Hartsock, Project Director, Anita Rodgers, Acting Deputy Project Director, Contracting Officer, and Gary Witherspoon, Deputy Project Director Public Outreach & Communications hosted both of the following CAT meetings.
First, a bit of an update on the full project from the team:
The Settlement agreement was approved by the Board of Public Works and, as we brought to you in our May 4 forum, Purple Line Transit Partners (PLTP) has started the procurement process to re-solicit the project for a new design-build contractor.
MDOT MTA (jointly with PLTP) will have final approval over selected replacement design-build contractor. As you know, MDOT MTA took over the large number of contracts when the former builder left the project, and since then, MDOT MTA has continued to manage those contracts and advance construction during this interim period.
The team gave us an estimated timeframe for the procurement process:
- Issued Request for Qualifications - January 8, 2021
- Received Statements of Qualifications - February 18, 2021
- Short-List Teams - March 3, 2021
- Issued Request for Proposals - March 8, 2021
- Select Contractor - Summer 2021
- Board of Public Works Review/Approval - Fall 2021
We know some of you have a keen interest in the progress of the vehicle production and we received an update on those, too. MDOT MTA has been working directly with CAF to progress production of vehicles. So far:
- All 130 car shells have been fabricated
- 94 car shells have been painted
- 82 are in Elmira, NY for assembly
- 5 are in transit from Spain to Elmira
- 7 are awaiting shipment from Spain to Elmira
Lastly, MDOT MTA recently established a Business Engagement Team in the Purple Line project management office to foster relationships with those businesses along the alignment that may be impacted. The team consists of:
Shaquanna Shields, Business Relationship Manager
Minh Diep, Business Engagement Officer for Montgomery County
Marlene Veras, Business Engagement Officer for Prince George’s County
Stations in this segment include:
• Riggs Road
• Adelphi Road - UMGC - UMD
The University Boulevard CAT meeting was held on May 19, 2021 at 6:30 pm.
For this segment of the line, the primary focus has been on utility relocations both underground and overhead. You’ll remember, this project is a massive utility relocation undertaking, so the ongoing utility work is expected to continue through the end of 2021, including WSSC waterline and sewer work, Pepco, and Washington Gas.
Crews are also continuing construction of the Northwest Branch Bridge for the Light Rail Vehicle and vehicular traffic, including deck work and retaining walls. Adelphi Plaza entrance reconstruction has been completed.
Over the next six months, crews will continue utility relocations both underground and overhead with WSSC waterline and sewer work, Pepco, Washington Gas, and Verizon. Please note, the Northwest Branch Bridge traffic will be switched to the westbound bridge and the eastbound bridge will be closed at that time. The team will also continue sidewalk, gutter, storm drain installation, driveway connections and roadwork widening from Temple Street to West Park Drive on University Boulevard.
Stations in this segment include:
• Silver Spring Metro
• Silver Spring Library
• Dale Drive
The Silver Spring CAT meeting was held on May 25, 2021 at 6:30 pm.
The main focus has been on underground utility relocations, including water lines, sewer, Pepco, Verizon, and Washington Gas. There are approximately 12 different crews supporting the utility relocation efforts in this segment and that work is expected to continue through the end of this year.
Over the next six months, crews expect to continue utility relocations both underground and overhead, including WSSC waterline and sewer work, Pepco, Verizon, Washington Gas, and Comcast.
They are also planning to remove worker fall protection from the Purple Line bridge over Colesville Road adjacent to the Silver Spring Transit Center this summer. Work will occur during nighttime hours in coordination with CSX and WMATA. They will also begin the removal of graffiti and surface treatment in identified areas during this summer. CAT members submitted questions and when the answers to those questions are published, we’ll let you know.
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