Thursday, December 11, 2014

Metro Green Line at Konterra?

With the opening of new roads around the Konterra site, as well as vague references to the first phase of the $3 billion Konterra Town Center East project coming in 2015, is it possible Washington Metro's Green Line could be extended to Konterra?

Konterra Map

Although no proposals are under active consideration, it would bring DC Metro within 10-15 minutes of Emerson.

Several old news articles about Konterra have alluded to requests from the developers of Konterra to the state and county for not only the new highway exits from I-95 and MD-200 which were just opened, but also a DC Metro stop at Konterra.

There is a MARC station at Muirkirk Road on Route 1 near the new intersection with MD-200, about 1.5 miles from the Konterra exit on I-95.

A study for the Maryland Legislature in 2007 looked at several options for extending the Green Line from Greenbelt to BWI:

The difficulty planners faced was how to minimize transit time from BWI to Greenbelt; utilize existing rights-of-way and roads as much as possible; and still include Columbia with its heavy population of commuters.

A possible "Columbia Loop" would have extended travel time from BWI to Greenbelt by about 20 minutes (increasing from about 30 minutes to 50 minutes).

The study is over 7 years old now and was derailed by the recession.

Some ideas about how the Green Line plans could be updated today could include:
  • Extension of Baltimore light rail and DC rail directly into the BWI terminals
  • Extension of Green Line to Konterra
  • Further extension of the Green Line on a mostly direct North-South route to BWI, incorporating Laurel, Fort Meade, and Arundel Mills
  • An East-West line from Columbia to Fort Meade (with a transfer station at Fort Meade for the Green Line to go south to Greenbelt/DC, and north to BWI)

On a different note, the concept of an Outer Washington Beltway was dropped more than a decade ago, though portions of it exist in rudimentary form as the Intercounty Connector (MD-200) and Sully Road (VA-28, which presently becomes a divided highway from Centreville, VA south of Dulles Airport to a northern terminus near Sterling, VA).

VA-28 is shown in blue and MD-200 is shown in red

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