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Public comment period open for construction plans on the American Legion Bridge along I-270

New toll roads likely
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Posted at 10:28 AM, Oct 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-01 10:32:09-04

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — A 45-day public comment period on future construction plans around I-270 and I-495 is now open.

One part of the plan is to replace the 60-year-old American Legion Bridge, that would consist of converting the one existing HOV lane in each direction on I-270 to a toll lane, while adding another new toll lane along the way between I-495 and north of I-370.

The plan also calls for two toll lanes to be added on I-495 in each direction from the George Washington Memorial Parkway in Fairfax County, Virginia, to Old Georgetown Road in Maryland.

Under the plan buses, motorcycles and vehicles carrying three or more people would still be able to use the toll lanes free of charge.

The project had been put on ice over opposition to the new toll lanes, but was recently revived when the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board voted 28-10 in favor of having it undergo a federal air quality analysis.

RELATED: Gov. Hogan's American Legion Bridge reconstruction project revived thanks to panel vote

Right now there is no talks of any improvements on I-495 east of the I-270 east spur.

Back in July 2020, the State and Federal Highway Administrations published a Draft Environmental Impact Statement which resulted in more than 3,000 public comments.

In response, some changes were made to the initial project plans which now include complete avoidance of Morningstar Cemetery in the Cabin John area, Plummers Island, and a research site for the Washington Biologists Field Club.

This latest public comment period gives residents a chance to respond to a supplemental draft that includes those changes and other minor revisions.

The comment period is open until 11:59 p.m. on November 15. During that time, two virtual public hearing sessions will be held on November 1.

Advance registration is required to provide verbal or written testimony during the virtual hearing sessions.