September 26, 2019
MDOT Public Affairs
Erin Henson, 410-865-1025
Jim Joyner, 410-865-1030
Transportation Officials Announce Key Project Updates
(Westminster, MD) – Deputy Transportation Secretary R. Earl Lewis Jr. today met with Carroll County officials to discuss the Draft FY 2020-2025 Consolidated Transportation Program (CTP), which details the Maryland Department of Transportation's (MDOT) draft six-year capital budget. Today's meeting was part of MDOT's annual tour of 23 Maryland counties and Baltimore City to update local officials and the public on the Hogan administration's $15.3 billion investment over the next six years in transit, highways, Motor Vehicle Administration facilities, the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore, and Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI Marshall). Officials also discussed the Maryland Transportation Authority's $3.1 billion in additional investments in Maryland's toll roads and bridges.
“We have delivered a record program in record time and will continue improving our services to Marylanders," said MDOT Secretary Pete K. Rahn.
In 2015, the Hogan Administration outlined a program of historic investment in infrastructure. Over the last four years, MDOT has completed 1,069 projects totaling nearly $5.9 billion.
Deputy Secretary Lewis outlined key updates on transportation investments in Carroll County and across Maryland. Statewide, there are 718 airport, highway, transit, port, bicycle, and Motor Vehicle Administration construction projects underway, with a value of $7.2 billion.
In addition to these projects, the deputy secretary announced an increase in funding through Highway User Revenues, made possible by bipartisan legislation signed by Governor Larry Hogan last year. Carroll County and its municipalities will receive nearly $4.7 million in Highway User Revenues this year, an increase of $560,000 over last year's allocation.
Additionally, the county will receive nearly $48,000 in highway safety grants through MDOT MVA, including money for the Carroll County Sheriff's Office and Hampstead, Mount Airy, Taneytown, Sykesville and Westminster police departments.
MDOT team members representing the agency's business units were: Deputy Transportation Secretary Lewis; Administrator Greg Slater from the MDOT State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA); Administrator Chrissy Nizer from the MDOT Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA); Local Transit Support Director Travis Johnston from the MDOT Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA); Regional Aviation Assistance Director Ashish Solanki from the MDOT Maryland Aviation Administration (MDOT MAA); and Project Planning and Program Development Director Melissa Williams from the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA).
MDOT MTA makes a significant investment in Carroll County by providing $1.27 million in operating and capital grants to support the local transit system. This includes funding for three new small buses and ongoing preventive maintenance. Additionally, $225,000 is being provided to nonprofits that serve the transportation needs of seniors and people with disabilities in the county.
Deputy Secretary Lewis also highlighted the latest records at the Port of Baltimore, including its handling of 11 million tons of general cargo in fiscal 2019. The port remains No. 1 in the nation for autos and roll on/roll off machinery. The port is ninth among U.S. ports for dollar value of cargo with $59.7 billion last year, and 11th for total foreign cargo tonnage with 43 million tons.
BWI Marshall is experiencing steadily growing passenger traffic with new airlines and service to new domestic and international markets. In 2018, BWI Marshall set a new all-time annual record for passenger traffic by exceeding 27.1 million passengers.
Transportation officials also provided updates on major highway projects and system preservation projects in Carroll County.
Construction continues on the $33 million MD 30 Business urban reconstruction project in Hampstead. The project is expected to be completed in 2020.
MDOT SHA recently completed a $5 million widening of MD 26 between Emerald Lane and Calvert Way in Eldersburg. The project included the addition of a second lane in each direction on MD 26.
A $2.5 million project to add left turn lanes at the intersection of MD 26 and Oakland Mills Road is nearing completion. The project will improve safety and relieve congestion.
Crews also are nearly finished making capacity improvements along MD 97 between Pleasant Valley Road and Airport Drive/Magna Way. A through-lane was added in each direction and a new traffic signal will be activated at the intersection of MD 97 and Arthur Peck Drive.
Construction is underway on a $4.1 million improvement project on MD 32 between Main Street and MacBeth Way to support the Army National Guard Readiness Center. The project will add an additional travel lane on northbound MD 32 and a center turn lane. Construction is scheduled to be completed in fall 2020.
In addition, construction is underway on a $2.2 million safety improvement project on MD 27 at Gillis Falls Road. The project will add left turn lanes on MD 27 and realign Gillis Falls Road opposite Harrisville Road. Carroll County contributed $300,000 toward construction and $100,000 for temporary traffic signals. The project is scheduled to be completed in 2020.
MDOT SHA next spring will begin intersection improvements on MD 32 at Johnsville Road and Bennett Road. The $4.5 million project will include left turn lanes to improve safety and relieve congestion.
Among other efforts to relieve congestion, MDOT SHA is in the process of installing Smart Traffic Signals along five miles of MD 140 between Hughes Shop Road and Market Street. The technology monitors real-time traffic conditions and uses computer software to adjust the timing of traffic signals, synchronizing the entire corridor to keep traffic moving.
To improve pedestrian safety, approximately $452,000 in Safe Routes to Schools funding has been awarded for sidewalk projects throughout the county. Locations included MD 851 southbound near Sykesville Middle School; MD 32 between Washington Lane and Kate Wagner Road; and along Johnsville Road, near Eldersburg Elementary, between Victor Drive and Bartholow Road.
At MDTA, Governor Hogan's latest proposed toll rate reductions could save Marylanders $28 million over the next five years. The proposal to reduce tolls for a third time under the Hogan administration is scheduled to be voted on by the MDTA Board on Nov. 21.
The MDTA also is upgrading toll-collection software and modernizing customer service. All-electronic tolling is set to begin in October at the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore and the Thomas J. Hatem Bridge in northeastern Maryland.
In addition, a Tier 1 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) study of location and funding options for a third Chesapeake Bay crossing is moving forward, with three alternatives and a “no-build" option now being reviewed.
Deputy Secretary Lewis said he was pleased to continue working with Carroll County officials on a highway safety plan to address personal injuries crashes in Maryland. The state experienced 513 roadway fatalities in 2018.
Maryland's Strategic Highway Safety Plan targets the most common causes of roadway fatalities in Maryland: impaired driving; speeding; not wearing seat belts; distracted driving; and not using crosswalks. Deputy Secretary Lewis encouraged residents and officials in attendance to sign MDOT's Traffic Safety Pledge, found at: http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/newMDOT/SafetyPledge.html
The meeting at the Carroll County Office Building was the second stop on the annual CTP tour. Meetings will be held at various locations in all 23 Maryland counties and Baltimore City. To view the full CTP tour schedule, visit: https://bit.ly/2mhwlHn. To view the Draft CTP, visit: www.ctp.maryland.gov.
Each fall, MDOT presents its draft six-year capital program to every county and Baltimore City for review and comment. Following input from the 24 local jurisdictions, MDOT prepares a final budget to present to the General Assembly in January.
Follow MDOT on Twitter at @MDOTNews and stay updated on the CTP Tour with #MDOTCTPtour. Find the latest news at http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/newMDOT/News/News.html and view MDOT photos on Flickr.