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I-270 gridlock cries out for solutions
WTOP ^ | January 7, 2013 | Ari Ashe

Posted on 01/08/2013 6:40:13 AM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks

WASHINGTON - Interstate 270 is considered one of the most choked roads in the Washington region, but solutions for the gridlock are few and far between.

Figures from the Maryland Department of Transportation show about 114,000 cars use I-270 daily, and that number is expected to jump to 200,000 in the next 10 to 15 years.

"Everyone who is familiar with 270 knows it is jammed up in the morning rush hour and evening rush hour," says Gus Bauman, who studies transportation and funding and who chaired a Maryland Blue Ribbon Commission on Transportation Funding.

One proposal to ease congestion is the Corridor Cities Transitway, which would link Shady Grove, Gaithersburg and Clarskburg.

"It will not end congestion on 270. It will help by providing an alternative route, so that you don't have to be on the road that is congested," Bauman says.

The Corridor Cities Transitway project has been on the books since the 1970s, and would likely cost between $500 million to $875 million, depending on the calculation and whether it would be a light rail project or bus rapid transit.

With Gov. Martin O'Malley and lawmakers concentrating on how to replenish the Tran sportation Trust Fund so it can be help fund the Purple Line and Baltimore's Red Line, the Corridor Cities Transitway seems years away. Maryland's Transportation Trust Fun may run of money in 2018.

Montgomery County Executive Isiah "Ike" Leggett sees the I-270 and Corridor Cities Transitway project as equal on the priority list to the Purple Line.

"The county's economic well being -- and the state's -- depends on a plan to move forward with securing new transportation revenues for critically needed infrastructure," says Leggett in a statement to WTOP.

Widening and expanding I-270 could present just as many challenges.

"The right of way on I-270 is 300 feet, but there are 12 lanes already. It's unlike Northern Virginia where they had space in the middle to build the new Beltway Express Lanes, I-270 doesn't have that space in the middle. It's pretty much maxed out," Bauman says.

While there is some talk about potential options closer to Frederick County, it appears in the heart of Montgomery County, particularly south of Gaithersburg, there may not be room to create brand new lanes.

Instead, the talk between Montgomery County and the Maryland State Highway Administration revolves around expanding High Occupancy Vehicle lanes.

In a statement to WTOP, the SHA points out one suggestion from the Montgomery County Council to remove the shoulder along I-270 and convert it to a HOV lane would pose some challenges.

SHA spokesman Dave Buck says it would severely impact emergency vehicle response times and force broken down cars or accident victims into travel lanes, posing a safety risk.

"While there are challenges to overcome and investments to be made, the Maryland Department of Transportation is committed to a partnership with Montgomery County and VDOT. Maryland is completing an analysis on the west side of I-495 and the southern end of I-270 (West Side Mobility Study), reviewing real-time traffic data to assist in identifying short, medium and long-term options along these corridors," says Buck.

As for express toll lanes, similar to those on the Capital Beltway in Virginia, the Maryland Transportation Authority, the agency that that operates the state's toll roads, tells WTOP there have been no conversations with anyone in Montgomery County nor with the transportation department about any projects for I-270 or the Beltway.


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events; US: Maryland
KEYWORDS: beltway; clarksburg; congestion; frederick; frederickcounty; gaithersburg; i270; improvements; infrastructure; isiahleggett; martinomalley; montgomerycounty; rockville; shadygrove; traffic; transportation

1 posted on 01/08/2013 6:40:16 AM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
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To: Abundy; Albion Wilde; AlwaysFree; AnnaSASsyFR; bayliving; BFM; cindy-true-supporter; ...

Maryland “Freak State” PING!


2 posted on 01/08/2013 6:41:00 AM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks (Happy New Year!)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

The best solution is to cut federal spending, and lay them all off. That would cut down on the BMW traffic jams in the area.


3 posted on 01/08/2013 6:42:59 AM PST by Daveinyork (."Trusting government with power and money is like trusting teenaged boys with whiskey and car keys,)
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To: Daveinyork

Of the USA’s 10 richest counties, 7 surround Washington DC.

All roads lead to the new Rome, and its clear they are quite crowded.


4 posted on 01/08/2013 6:50:37 AM PST by PGR88
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Just keep building and more and more Housing developments and increasing Maryland population like what has happened the past 10 to 15 years, that will help.

This is a disaster. And it turned R counties like Howard Dem too.


5 posted on 01/08/2013 6:54:07 AM PST by sickoflibs (Losing to O is NOT a principle!)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

It’s crowded going North that;s for sure, But north of Washington gets all of the funding, while we down Sout of DC get roads like Rt. 5 that will tear the bottom out of your car, and congested 210. We need a new Morgantown Bridge and a new Bridge across to Solomons Island., both are congested and the solomons Bridge was so badly constructed they had to put braces on it a year after it was built. It could fall down any time.


6 posted on 01/08/2013 6:55:07 AM PST by Venturer
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Part of this highway goes through Chris Van Hollen’s district of VERY wealthy demon-rats....
Hey Chris...tax the a** off your richey tax payers...they can do more of their fair share to solve this problem....you putz.


7 posted on 01/08/2013 6:56:12 AM PST by matginzac
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Gee, I thought all liberals used mass transportation !!!

Guess not, trains are for you and not for me.


8 posted on 01/08/2013 6:57:52 AM PST by George from New England (escaped CT in 2006, now living north of Tampa)
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To: sickoflibs
This is a disaster.

No, it's not. Putting all those liberal hacks in Maryland keeps them out of Virginia.

9 posted on 01/08/2013 6:58:24 AM PST by palmer (Obama = Carter + affirmative action)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Cut the budget, targeting those employed in or near DC.

With reduced local employment, the traffic should soon subside.

10 posted on 01/08/2013 6:58:54 AM PST by Paladin2
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Shut down more lanes. We’ll all be better off if those assclowns never reach their offices.


11 posted on 01/08/2013 7:00:58 AM PST by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Put a second layer of 12 lanes right above it.


12 posted on 01/08/2013 7:02:32 AM PST by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Bustard's Solution:

Reduce the size and scope of Fedzilla. Like, maybe, all the way down to what the Constitution actually specifies. Fewer unconstitutional bureaucracies ==> fewer bureaucrats ==> less traffic on I-270.

Simple, no?

13 posted on 01/08/2013 7:03:31 AM PST by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

How about getting rid of the freaking HOV lanes — the social experiment that reduces the road capacity between 20% and 33%, depending on the number of other lanes out there? Anyone who’s ever driven that side of the Beltway will tell you that the Inner Loop starts backing up into Virginia at almost precisely 3:30pm every day. Why? Because that’s when 1/3 of the I-270 spur lanes are taken away for HOV restrictions.


14 posted on 01/08/2013 7:05:04 AM PST by kevkrom (If a wise man has an argument with a foolish man, the fool only rages or laughs...)
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To: Paladin2

I agree. What I get out of this place (working around DC) is mostly gravy and I could live on 1/3 of what I make. Technically I am part of the problem, however I and particularly my boss do much-needed work. But there needs to be substantial cuts even though it will hurt some of the good work because there is too much power concentrated here in all agencies including domestic ones.


15 posted on 01/08/2013 7:07:44 AM PST by palmer (Obama = Carter + affirmative action)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

“The county’s economic well being — and the state’s — depends on a plan ...”

Also the country’s and the world’s well being!!!


16 posted on 01/08/2013 7:08:17 AM PST by cymbeline
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
With Gov. Martin O'Malley and lawmakers concentrating on how to replenish the Tran sportation Trust Fund ...

To drive through Maryland on I-95 northbound, I pay $3 to go through the Harbor Tunnel, and another $4 to go over the Susquehanna River bridge. I would also say that this is also one of the most heavily-travelled segments of interstate in the country. Yet the Transportation Trust Fund is broke? Where does all the money go????

17 posted on 01/08/2013 7:10:01 AM PST by Rummyfan (Iraq: it's not about Iraq anymore, it's about the USA!)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Make all the .gov employees ride the bus and that should help a lot...


18 posted on 01/08/2013 7:16:46 AM PST by ▀udda▀udd (>> F U B O << "What the hell kind of country is this if I can only hate a man if he's white?")
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To: Rummyfan

The Wednesday after Christmas it was 20 miles a hour up I95 over the Susquehanna. It is such a wonderful road.


19 posted on 01/08/2013 7:23:17 AM PST by bmwcyle (We have gone over the cliff and we are about to hit the bottom)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Here ya go.....problem solved:


20 posted on 01/08/2013 7:23:43 AM PST by Texas Eagle (If it wasn't for double-standards, Liberals would have no standards at all -- Te?xas Eagle)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

I don’t know what the solutions are, but I am pretty sure they will involve a lot of government spending that gets into the pockets of politically connected contractors.


21 posted on 01/08/2013 7:28:20 AM PST by Opinionated Blowhard ("When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.")
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

I suspect that if they extended the Metro from Shady Grove up to Frederick, that would help considerably. For me, the best solution was to just not get a job in The City.


22 posted on 01/08/2013 7:32:17 AM PST by Oberon (Big Brutha Be Watchin'.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
A useless study was done on the bay area traffic, but the data gathering technic was very informative.

The study's authors anonymously tracked more than 350,000 Bay Area drivers using their cellphone and GPS signals -- the first time that's been done -- to gather some of the most detailed data yet on what causes our traffic jams.

http://www.mercurynews.com/traffic/ci_22328900/key-source-bay-area-traffic-headaches-revealed-by?source=rss

23 posted on 01/08/2013 7:35:44 AM PST by twistedwrench
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

IMHO, I-270 congestion is a sign of morbidly obese, bloated federal, state, local government within Maryland, DC and Virginia. Same with I-695 and I-495.


24 posted on 01/08/2013 7:46:13 AM PST by NRA1995 (I'd rather be a living "gun culture" member than a dead anti-gun candy-ass.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Regarding area traffic jams: A number of places around the country have tried schemes that might work for our District of Columbia:

The I-270 issue is but a symptom of the bigger problem.

It's not like this situation hasn't been discussed before. Science fiction fans will remember the Foundation series by Issac Asimov, and how the planet Trantor became one very large city because it was the "seat" of the Galactic Empire...and the problems all that centralization caused. And how the Empire finally broke into little bitty pieces because of the concentration.

25 posted on 01/08/2013 7:53:11 AM PST by asinclair (B*llshit is a renewable resource.)
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

lmao


26 posted on 01/08/2013 8:38:47 AM PST by Rannug ("God has given it to me, let him who touches it beware.")
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To: Rannug

Make all the moronic government employees take their vaunted buses, light rail and subways. Instead, either they provide parking spaces for these dregs or give them drivers. The head of WDC Metro system has a taxpayer provided car and driver. Take Metro, you putz!


27 posted on 01/08/2013 9:03:13 AM PST by hal ogen (First Amendment or Reeducation Camp?)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

I have a solution. Congress can meet virtually via video conferencing. If they did their work from their district, perhaps they wouldn’t so quickly become such creatures of Washington.


28 posted on 01/08/2013 9:04:54 AM PST by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

Stop voting Democrat.


29 posted on 01/08/2013 9:09:17 AM PST by bmwcyle (We have gone over the cliff and we are about to hit the bottom)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
With Gov. Martin O'Malley and lawmakers concentrating on how to replenish the Tran sportation Trust Fund so it can be help fund the Purple Line and Baltimore's Red Line...

Baltimore's Red Line?

30 posted on 01/08/2013 9:14:46 AM PST by COBOL2Java (kak-is-toc-ra-cy: Government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens. See: GOP-e)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

The solution is obvious. Put the Detroit city council in charge of the DC region.


31 posted on 01/08/2013 9:19:47 AM PST by lurk
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

These days the Federal Gov’t is huge jobs program for liberals and affirmative action hires all kinds meaning, women, blacks, gays Hispanic etc. This is how Federal hiring is trending in the DC area. Why will any programs be cut if this means a loss of jobs for liberals and Obama voters? Defense in the largest exception.

Obama wants to slash defense and kill off NASA. This is where the white guys work who tend to be right of center. So reduce their jobs while increasing Federal employment at the Department of education which is heavily female, gay and minority. Those jobs are “reparations” jobs. Take from the “whiter” productive private sector via higher taxes and transfer the wealth to all kinds of Federal employees who are unneeded, doing useless work or over-regulating.

Not mention taking from the private sector (taxes) and give to the Obama voters via welfare, Section8, 0bama-Care and more


32 posted on 01/08/2013 9:22:07 AM PST by dennisw (The first principle is to find out who you are then you can achieve anything -- Buddhist monk)
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To: Rummyfan

It’s quite simple. The state does exactly what the Fed does - They treat the transportation and airport “trust funds” like part of the general revenue. There are no trusts funds, and consequently, no trust of yet one more aspect of government.


33 posted on 01/08/2013 9:47:41 AM PST by Pecos (If more sane people carried guns, fewer crazies would get off a second shot.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

I know a good solution to all that gridlock! The trucking industry just needs to stop sending any trucks into the region just like I did when I owned my own trucking business.


34 posted on 01/08/2013 10:11:18 AM PST by CynicalBear
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To: PGR88

“All roads lead to the new Rome, and its clear they are quite crowded.”

With people with their snouts in the public trough.


35 posted on 01/08/2013 10:38:13 AM PST by Daveinyork (."Trusting government with power and money is like trusting teenaged boys with whiskey and car keys,)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks

If there is no room to expand the shoulders, why don’t they stack one highway on top of another as they do in parts of the NYC metro area?

Other solutions would include smarter bus or train service, such as a dedicated bus run only for a large employer such as a major government agency, combined with employees-only personal consumer options built into any large employer. Such a building should have a grocery, a deli, a dry cleaner, a gym, medical office, dentist, hairdresser, kiosks from larger entities like Home Depot where a consultant can help people order what they need and have it delivered, and all the other things people try to do on the way home that presently necessitate a private car.


36 posted on 01/08/2013 12:01:15 PM PST by Albion Wilde ("If you're going through hell, keep on going."--Winston Churchill)
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To: kevkrom

I believe that the problem is not the HOV on the Spur, but the number of people trying to shift lanes between the 270 split and Montrose RD. If you are trying to make the Montrose Road exit from the spur, you need to cross three lanes while traffic from the outer loop is trying to cross at least three lanes to get to the through lanes.

The next monster bottleneck is Northbound past Father Hurley where the road goes from three lanes to two. I have seen this pinch point back traffic up past 118.


37 posted on 01/08/2013 1:15:19 PM PST by Fraxinus (My opinion, worth what you paid.)
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To: PGR88; Daveinyork; Tolerance Sucks Rocks

You are spot on. The unemployment figures surrounding DC are well below the national average. Zero keeps increaseing the the size o f government 18,000 new IRS employees for Zero Care compliance alone.


38 posted on 01/09/2013 5:12:51 AM PST by Jimmy Valentine's brother (CBC, just another bunch of jive a$$ street corner hustlers)
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