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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 16, 2018

Contact:
MDOT Public Affairs

Erin Henson, 410-865-1025
ehenson@mdot.maryland.gov

Brandi Bottalico, 410-865-1030
bbottalico1@mdot.maryland.gov

MDOT OFFICIALS MET WITH DORCHESTER COUNTY
AS PART OF ANNUAL STATEWIDE TOUR

TO DISCUSS TRANSPORTATION PRIORITIES

Deputy Transportation Secretary Announced Local Grants and Key Project Updates

(Cambridge, MD) – Deputy Transportation Secretary Jim Ports today met with Dorchester County officials to discuss the Draft FY 2019-2024 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 $16 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 $3.3 billion in additional investments in Maryland’s toll roads and bridges.

“This CTP program outlines our balanced approach to transportation by funding transit and continuing to deliver on the largest construction program in the state’s history,” said Deputy Secretary Jim Ports. “We have completed top priority projects across the state and continue to break records at the port and airport. Customer service is a Hogan administration top priority and at MDOT MVA alone we’re offering more services than ever while decreasing wait times.”

MDOT team members representing the agency’s business units were: Deputy Secretary Ports; Administrator Chrissy Nizer from the MDOT Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA); Regional Aviation Assistance Director Ashish Solanki from the MDOT Maryland Aviation Administration (MDOT MAA); Local Transit Support Director Travis Johnston from the MDOT Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA); Administrator Greg Slater and District Engineer James Meredith from the MDOT State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA); Harbor Development Director Chris Correale from the MDOT Maryland Port Administration (MDOT MPA); and Project Planning & Program Development Director Melissa Williams from the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA).

Deputy Secretary Ports outlined key updates on transportation investments. Statewide, there are 816 airport, highway, transit, port, bicycle, and motor vehicle administration construction projects underway with a value of $8.8 billion.

In addition to these projects, transportation officials announced funding Dorchester County’s local priorities, including: $10.5 million in Highway User Revenues for the county for FY 2019 – FY 2024, which includes an additional $943,000 in grants recently awarded by the governor. Because Dorchester County officials signed the HUR grant application at the Maryland Association of Counties Summer Conference in Ocean City, the county received those funds two weeks early.

MDOT MTA makes a significant investment in transit in Dorchester County by providing $786,000 in operating and capital grants to support the local transit operation. This funding includes the replacement of two gasoline engines, two gasoline transmissions, and ongoing preventive maintenance. Additionally, $195,000 in funding is provided to nonprofits that serve the transportation needs of seniors and people with disabilities in the county.

Deputy Secretary Ports also touted the latest records at the Port of Baltimore, including the port handling 10.9 million tons of general cargo – from autos and heavy machinery to containers – in FY 2018. The port remains No. 1 in the nation for autos and roll on/roll off machinery, and handled a record 596,972 containers in 2017.

BWI Marshall has experienced steadily growing passenger traffic with new airlines and service to new domestic and international markets. In 2017, BWI Marshall set a new all-time annual record for passenger traffic by exceeding 26 million passengers. The airport through July set passenger records in 36 of the previous 37 months.

On the highway side, Deputy Secretary Ports noted that under Governor Hogan’s leadership, Maryland is continuing to deliver on record investments in highways and bridges. Of the 69 structurally deficient bridges the Hogan administration identified in June 2015, all have been repaired, replaced or are advertised for construction.

MDOT SHA has completed or is working on several resurfacing projects throughout the county. On MD 795 – the Cambridge Creek Bridge – the drawbridge repair was completed in the spring of 2018. It opened a week earlier than anticipated. In addition, the resurfacing of MD 307 between MD 331 and the Caroline County line was completed in the fall of 2017.

Resurfacing on MD 336 between MD 335 and Blackwater Road was completed in the spring of 2018, as was the resurfacing on MD 343 between Town Point Road and Leonard’s Lane.

Dorchester County was awarded $221,000 in Transportation Alternatives funding to construct the Cannery Park Trail, which will include a multimodal shared-use path along the abandoned rail line between Cedar Street and Washington Street near Dorchester Avenue.

At MDTA, Governor Hogan’s toll rate reductions have saved Marylanders $186 million since 2015. A Tier 1 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) study of location and funding options for a third Chesapeake Bay crossing began in January 2017 and will take up to 48 months to complete.

Deputy Secretary Ports encouraged Dorchester County officials to develop a highway safety plan or adopt Maryland’s. Maryland experienced 558 roadway fatalities in 2017 is unacceptable. The state’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. Residents were urged to sign Transportation Secretary Pete K. Rahn’s Traffic Safety Pledge, at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MDOTsafetypledge.

Officials and residents met today at the county office building in Cambridge. The meeting was the 15th stop on the annual CTP tour, which is scheduled to conclude November 15 in Baltimore County. Meetings are planned at various locations in all 23 Maryland counties and Baltimore City. For a complete list of the CTP tour schedule with dates, times and locations visit: http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/newMDOT/Planning/CTP/2018_CTP_Tour/Index.html. 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.

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