May 12, 2015

The Honorable Larry Hogan

Governor of Maryland

100 State Circle
Annapolis, Maryland 21401-1925

 

Dear Governor Hogan,

We hereby write to you on behalf of over 25,000 individual Maryland citizens and families who have signed petitions, sent letters, or filed comments opposing the Purple Line.

 

These voices against the Purple Line come as signatures in petitions, comments on the Purple Line Environmental Impact Statements, from public testimony, and electronic sign-ons to a petition hosted by Change.org in opposition to the Purple Line.

 

 

In addition:

 

 

Friends of the Capital Crescent Trail is a grassroots all-volunteer organization dedicated to preserving the Capital Crescent Trail as a park.  The current Purple Line plan would clear-cut 48 acres of forest and obliterate the popular linear park that currently connects Bethesda to Silver Spring.  In the words of one of the petitioners, the Purple Line is “the silliest idea and waste of money on infrastructure I have ever seen.”
In addition to the popular support for the Trail and the opposition to the Purple Line project, we have identified a number of legal deficiencies.  These include but are not limited to the failure to properly and fully assess costs and weigh alternatives, as required by both federal and Maryland law.  More recently we have obtained an MTA Stormwater Management Concept Report that reveals dozens of points where polluted run-off will not be controlled on site, many of which are also likely to be contaminated by over 200 highly hazardous materials sites.  These and other deficiencies make the Purple Line a very risky project.  They will result in further costs and delays at the very least.

 

Due to time limits in federal law, we have had no choice but to file a lawsuit in federal court invoking federal law in order to provide an effective voice for the 25,000 petitioners and the millions of Marylanders they represent. In order to pursue all reasonable remedies in a timely manner we have also had to send, more recently, a Notice of Intent to Sue to enforce Maryland law.

 

We would much prefer that the Trail be recognized as an official park and that other more efficient and effective transportation alternatives be properly examined and pursued.

 

We therefore ask that you seize this historic moment and designate the Capital Crescent Trail between Bethesda and Silver Spring as a permanent park to preserve this trail for generations to come and create a world-class legacy for Maryland and the entire National Capital Area.

 

Sincerely,

Ajay Bhatt

President

cc:  Messrs. Adam Dubitsky and Mark Newgent, Office of the Governor

 

 

  1. Other comments included identical messages from the area bicycle club supporting the PL only if it provides a safe, efficient bike trail which is now less and less likely with the loss of an important tunnel by-passing at grade crossings of Wisconsin, and potentially overpass connections at Connecticut and other major traffic corridors. Close to 100 commenters focused solely on mitigation of the problems to be caused by the Wayne Avenue power station.  Another 50 or so called for greater mitigation for an acceptable PL.  Fewer than 50 comments on the FEIS were out and out supporters.
  2. http://savethetrail.org/news-releases/purple-line-plaintiffs-find-pattern-of-mischaracterizations-and-omissions-broaden-lawsuit/
  3. http://savethetrail.org/news-releases/citizens-notify-gov-hogan-of-intent-to-sue-to-enforce-state-law-citing-purple-line-failures-to-assess-full-risks-and-costs/

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