Recap: Infrastructure and Land Use Member Meeting with Kelly Blynn, Coalition for Smarter Growth

Posted Date: 
November 12, 2013

November 12th, 2013

Guest Speaker: Kelly Blynn, Next Generation of Transit Campaign Manager, Coalition for Smarter Growth


Vice-Chair of the Infrastructure and Land Use Committee, Gus Bauman, welcomed MCCC members and introduced our guest speaker, Kelly Blynn, Next Generation of Transit Campaign Manager, Coalition for Smarter Growth. The Coalition for Smarter Growth is the leading organization in the Washington D.C. region dedicated to making the case for smart growth. Kelly Blynn concentrates on Montgomery County issues such as the,CCT,  Purple Line and the proposed Rapid Transit Plan.  

The Rapid Transit Plan that is currently under consideration by the Montgomery County Executive and County Council  was the focus of this Member Meeting. Blynn began the presentation with a video that focused on its main principles. In Montgomery County in the year 2040, 21% population growth, 39% employment growth and 70% transportation congestion is projected.   The Rapid Transit Plan proposes a 10-route, 80-mile matrix system connecting parts of the county that are not well served by transit. This would be the first system in the Nation of such magnitude; systems in Oregon and Ohio have only one route. The plan supports recommendations for creating a safe and walkable environment near transit with bicycle and pedestrian priority areas . Blynn said that most people who use the ‘Park and Ride’ at Metro stations drive less than 1 mile to the station; Rapid Transit would fill in the gaps and reduce the number of cars that drive to other modes of transportation.

The Rapid Transit system would integrate the Metro, local buses and commuter buses (and a potential MARC line) to create an interconnected regional transit network. A priority for CSG is reinvesting in Metro. The Rapid Transit system also will be integrated with RideOn and Metro buses. The County Council has started a technical task force to examine that issue. 

A member commented that Federal agencies are supportive of Rapid Transit because it could provide employees with a quick and convenient transit system that serves their campuses.

The County Council will vote on the Rapid Transit Plan on November 26, 2013. If the functional Master Plan is passed and financing is secured, the build out would be done in phases. 

For more information on Bus Rapid Transit in Montgomery County, read an article published in the Washington Post on November 12th titled “Montgomery taking a hard look at bus rapid transit.”

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