FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Maryland Department of Transportation Office of Public Affairs
David Broughton, 410-865-1029
Jim Joyner, 410-865-1030
Officials Outline Six-Year Draft Budget and Provide Key Project Updates
LEONARDTOWN, MD (October 17, 2023) – Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul J. Wiedefeld and other representatives of the Maryland Department of Transportation met today with St. Mary's County officials to discuss the department's six-year Draft FY 2024-2029 Consolidated Transportation Program. The plan calls for a $21.2 billion, six-year investment to create a safer, cleaner, efficient and accessible transportation system connecting Marylanders to jobs, schools, recreation, health care and services.
“Delivering safe, reliable, equitable and sustainable transportation is critical to Maryland's economic health and the vibrancy of neighborhoods across the state. This Draft CTP is inspired by that mission," said Secretary Wiedefeld. “We know there are challenges ahead, and we are committed to fiscal responsibility and collaboration with local communities, stakeholders and elected officials as we deliver the transportation network Marylanders need and deserve."
The Draft Consolidated Transportation Program includes funding to maintain existing transportation facilities, expand transit opportunities, invest in Maryland's economic growth and support the state's long-term goals for mobility, safety, equity, environmental stewardship and economic growth. To view the full Draft FY 2024-2029 Consolidated Transportation Program, go to ctp.maryland.gov.
The program allocates funding for electric vehicle infrastructure, as well as investment in the transition to zero-emission transit buses and other carbon reduction and resiliency programs, establishing Maryland as national leader in addressing climate goals. The program also includes funding to promote Transit-Oriented Development to spur economic growth in transit corridors, and for projects to support Complete Streets – an initiative to make Maryland's roadways safer and more accessible for all users, and help reduce the number of roadway fatalities and injuries.
The program outlines investments in each mode funded by the Transportation Trust Fund: Maryland Aviation Administration, Maryland Port Administration, Maryland Transit Administration, Motor Vehicle Administration, State Highway Administration and The Secretary's Office, as well as Maryland's investment in the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.
The plan also includes an additional $2.7 billion investment planned by the Maryland Transportation Authority. Receiving no funds from the Transportation Trust Fund, the Maryland Transportation Authority's toll facilities are fully financed, constructed, operated, maintained, improved and protected with toll revenues paid by customers using those facilities.
At Tuesday's meeting, transportation officials offered details of projects affecting St. Mary's County. In addition to Secretary Wiedefeld, officials attending included State Highway Administrator William Pines; Motor Vehicle Administrator Chrissy Nizer; Maryland Transit Administration Director of Local Transit Support Travis Johnston; Maryland Aviation Administration Regional Aviation Director Ashish Solanki and Maryland Transportation Authority Executive Director Joey Sagal.
State Highway Administrator Pines told officials the department completed the $31.3 million project this year to widen and make safety improvements along MD 5 from Camp Brown Road to the Lake Conoy Causeway, and is progressing on MD 5 improvements in Great Mills between MD 471 and MD 246. This $26.5 million “gateway" project includes replacing the MD 5 bridge over the Saint Mary's River, widening and resurfacing Point Lookout Road from two to four lanes, and providing pedestrian upgrades with new sidewalks compatible with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Administrator Pines said the agency is studying clearance requirements for a potential future replacement of the Thomas Johnson Memorial Bridge. The State Highway Administration has allocated $1 million to match another $1 million in funds directed by Maryland's Congressional delegation for the study.
He also noted that last month, Governor Wes Moore announced more than $25 million federal and state grants for 40 bicycle, pedestrian and trail projects across Maryland – including $1.2 million through the Maryland Department of Transportation's Kim Lamphier Bikeways Network Program for construction of the seventh phase of the Three Notch Trail from Hollywood Road to FDR Boulevard.
Maryland Transportation Authority Executive Director Joey Sagal said after completion last year of the new Nice-Middleton Bridge, removal of the superstructure of the former span has been completed, and the substructure removal will continue into 2024. Materials from the older span are being used to create artificial reef sites to provide aquatic shelter and habitat for marine life.
Officials noted other allocations for the county in the Draft Consolidated Transportation Program:
- $1.4 million in operating and capital grants to support county transit operations;
- $34,000 in highway safety grants to law enforcement agencies including the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office and St. Mary's County Health Department; and
- $10,000 to support an environmental assessment at St. Mary's County Regional Airport.
The St. Mary's County meeting was part of the Maryland Department of Transportation's tour of all 23 Maryland counties and Baltimore City to discuss the funding plan and receive input from local officials and the public. The tour continues into November. Dates and locations for upcoming sessions can be found here. The schedule is subject to change and will be updated as needed throughout the process.
Following the tour, the Draft FY 2024-2029 Consolidated Transportation Program will be finalized and submitted in January for consideration during the 2024 General Assembly session.