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Purple Line NOW News - May 18, 2022

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

  • What's Happening at PLN?
    • Input Needed for our 100th Issue of Purple Line NOW News!
    • Are You a Purple Line NOW Donor?
  • Purple Line in the News
  • Happening Along the Purple Line Corridor
    • Growth Along the Corridor
    • Support for Housing at Chevy Chase Library Site
    • Biden Administration Announces Transit-Oriented Priority
    • New Placemaking Minor Prepares Students to Envision Public Spaces
  • Construction News & Project Features
    • Open Houses Scheduled to Meet New Builder
    • Community Advisory Team Meetings
    • Photos from Around the Corridor

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What' Happening


Input Needed for our 100th Issue of Purple Line NOW!

We have just four issues left before our 100th issue of Purple Line NOW News! Thank you to those who have sent blurbs of memories from the early days (specifically, the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s!) We need more! Pictures are particularly fun -- and if someone is rocking those muttonchop sideburns while advocating for what was (eventually) to become the Purple Line, all the better!

If you didn't catch it in our previous newsletters, we are planning a commemorative issue and want to take a stroll down memory lane -- back to the beginning of the project, when the idea of a Purple Line was just a hope and a dream. If you were around these parts back then and have photos, an anecdote or two, or even a memory of the work that went into imagining an east-west light rail train, finding support from elected officials, applying for federal funding, or any other hurdle (or achievement), PLEASE send them our way!

We will include as many as we can in the issue, but time is running out. Send to Christine Scott, Executive Director at [email protected]. Thank you! 

Are You A Purple Line NOW Donor?

Each month, we rotate onto our Donors List those who have made a financial contribution to Purple Line NOW in the previous month. If that includes you, your name will stay on that list for a full year following your contribution. Thank you, thank you!

**If you do not see your name on our Donors List, we hope you will consider helping us continue our work!** 

We use every donation we receive to continue our newsletter, continue offering regular webinars, continue being a strong liaison to help connect you to people who can solve your issues, and continue our strong advocacy for the project in every way possible. If you would like to know more about who we are, why we are asking for donations, and what we do with your gift once it arrives on our doorstep, you can read all about it in our November newsletter.

Thank you so much for your consideration! Unless you tell us otherwise, your name will be listed on our website and in publications for a year following your donation.

Christine Scott, Executive Director
PL in the News


Bohnel, S., “County Council says it supports housing at Chevy Chase Library site.” Bethesda Magazine, 12 May 2022.

Haslam, M., "New Creative Placemaking Minor to Prepare Students to Envision Public Spaces." Maryland Today, 2 May 2022.

Features and Highlights


Growth Along the Corridor

As we have seen since the Purple Line was given the green light back in 2015, there has been lots of new growth adjacent to the coming light rail. According to the Diamondback (May 8, 2022), one such development is set to open later this summer in College Park. The Aster is a 393-unit apartment complex which will include a Trader Joe’s grocery store, restaurants, and other retailers. The complex is located just south of campus and will appeal to the wider College Park community. Read more here: Aster: New multi-use development set to open in College Park

If you attended Purple Line NOW's virtual forum back in August 2020, you may remember John L. Ziegenhein, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Chevy Chase Land Company and Justin Kennell, Development Manager, Bozzuto Development Company gave a brief overview of their new property development alongside the Purple Line station in Chevy Chase. They recently announced some of the new retailers that will be located within their plaza by late 2023, including The Creamery (the beloved Baltimore ice cream shop), restaurants Elena James, UnCorked, and Playa Bowls, as well as CVS, an as-yet-to-be-named grocer, and others. Read more here:

Support for Housing at Chevy Chase Library Site

The Montgomery County Council has voted unanimously for an amendment calling for housing at the redesigned Chevy Chase Library, which happens to be very close to the new Purple Line station. According to an article in Bethesda Magazine, while the bill doesn’t guarantee housing at the site, it does “allow for the possibility of redevelopment of the Chevy Chase library, including housing on the site.” How many units might be included or under what price points the housing will fall has yet to be determined. (Bohnel, S., “County Council says it supports housing at Chevy Chase Library site.” Bethesda Magazine, 12 May 2022.)

Biden Administration Announces Transit-Oriented Development Priority

The Biden administration has announced that it is prioritizing transit-oriented development in the infrastructure bill passed on a bipartisan basis last year.

It appears that the U.S. Department of Transportation is prioritizing density and transit-oriented-development as it disburses discretionary funds from the bipartisan infrastructure package. You can read more about the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) at the link.

New Placemaking Minor Prepares Students to Envision Public Spaces

According to an article in Maryland Today, the University of Maryland’s School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation and the College of Arts and Humanities have created a minor in creative placemaking that "will use art, culture and design to spark conversations about a community's future.” As part of the curriculum, students will work in local communities, “including those that stand to be impacted by the the construction of Maryland's Purple Line to advance community goals, protect and celebrate identity and spur equitable economic development." (Haslam, M., "New Creative Placemaking Minor to Prepare Students to Envision Public Spaces." Maryland Today, 2 May 2022.)

Construction Updates


Open Houses Scheduled to Meet New Builder

The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) will be holding two in-person open houses to introduce the public to Maryland Transit Solutions (MTS), the new design-build team. According to their press release, MDOT MTA Administrator Holly Arnold said, "The team is looking forward to introducing our new design-build team to the community. We want to proactively engage with residents, businesses, and other stakeholders to let them know in advance what construction work they can expect to see as we begin a new chapter of delivering the Purple Line for Maryland.”

The open houses will take place at two venues in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties:

• May 25, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Silver Spring Civic Building, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring MD 20910
• May 26, 6:30-8:30 p.m., University of Maryland Stamp Student Union, Atrium, 3972 Campus Drive, College Park, MD 20742

We are looking forward to meeting the new partner and learning about the construction schedule going forward.

Community Advisory Team Meetings to Resume in June

We are thrilled the Community Advisory Team (CAT) meetings will resume in June and will publish those dates as soon as they are set.

Photos from Around the Corridor

Thank you to MDOT MTA for the following photos! Do you have a snap from around the corridor you'd like to share? Send them along to [email protected]. Photos must be your original. 

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