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April 18, 2022

US DOT provides up to $1.76bn loan to Purple Line rail project in Maryland

The loan will cover up to 33% of the total project cost of $5.9bn.

The US Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Build America Bureau has provided up to $1.76bn in loan for the Purple Line Light Rail Transit Project in the state of Maryland.

As part of a public-private partnership agreement (P3 agreement), the Maryland Department of Transportation and the Maryland Transit Administration is collaborating with Purple Line Transit Partners for the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of the rail system for 35 years.

The Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan is said to cover up to 33% of the total costs of the $5.9bn project.

US DOT deputy transportation secretary Polly Trottenberg said: “The Purple Line will provide faster, more direct, and more reliable transit service for the suburban Maryland and DC region’s residents and visitors while easing congestion on local roads.

“By cutting an estimated 17,000 vehicle trips each day and operating using electric power, this project has tremendous environmental benefits as well.” 

The 16.2-mile east-west light rail transit line, which is presently under construction, will cover Bethesda in Montgomery County to New Carrollton in Prince George’s County.

Featuring 21 stations, the line will include five major activity centres such as Bethesda, Silver Spring, Takoma-Langley Park, College Park, and New Carrollton.

These centres will be linked with 16 other stations serving residential communities and commercial districts as well as institutional places.

The line will help create direct connections with four branches of the existing Metrorail system besides three MARC commuter rail lines and Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor line.

Last month, the US DOT also committed to provide up to $100m in funding for the $12.3bn Hudson Tunnel commuter rail project, which aims to improve the current functionality of the Hudson River rail crossing between New Jersey and New York in the Northeast Corridor (NEC).

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