Md. commuters urged to weigh in on the future of I-270 and American Legion Bridge

Residents attended an open house event Monday night on the future of the American Legion Bridge and Interstate 270 in Maryland. (WTOP/Kyle Cooper)
The Maryland Department of Transportation says it will work in the community to support active transportation and alternative forms of transportation. (WTOP/Kyle Cooper)
Another part of MDOT’s plan is to implement managed lanes with the American Legion Bridge, Interstate 495 to the Interstate 270 West Spur and the I-270 West Spur. (WTOP/Kyle Cooper)
MDOT’s I-270 North Plan involves beginning a “formal environmental study” into the transportation needs on and around the highway. (WTOP/Kyle Cooper)
MDOT is asking the public to comment and give their input about the proposed ideas. (WTOP/Kyle Cooper)

A series of open house events got underway Monday night on the future of the American Legion Bridge and Interstate 270 in Maryland.

Ideas to improve the roadways were laid out in stations across a large room at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School.

“Whether you’re sitting in traffic, trying to take a bus, trying to walk or bike, these corridors really don’t work for anyone,” said Drew Morrison, a policy advisor with the Maryland Department of Transportation.

The six-step proposal is “dedicated to enhancing multimodal transportation facilities and elevating travel experiences across the American Legion Bridge and I-270 up to Frederick,” according to MDOT’s program website. The project — pending some multimillion-dollar funding — could be completed as soon as 2031.

Corey Weller, who lives in Bethesda, attended the open house and said he liked one idea he saw.

“I’m excited to hear about an actual bus route between Bethesda and Tysons,” he said.

Armen Sahagian, of Rockville, expressed hope for a change to how bike lanes have been done in the past.

“I’m not in favor of the bicycle lanes that were put in on major arteries,” he said.

Morrison said it will still be a while before there’s a final design for the project.

“If we hit all our marks when it comes to the managed lanes project, we’re looking at a 2026 timeline to bring a design builder on board,” he said.

Two more open houses about the project will be held this week, with another scheduled next month for Maryland residents to attend:

  • Wednesday, Nov. 15, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the DoubleTree Hotel, 620 Perry Parkway, Gaithersburg. Transit is available on Ride On routes 54, 55, 56, 59, and 61.
  • Thursday, Nov. 16, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Frederick High School, 650 Carroll Parkway, Frederick. Transit is available on Connector routes 40, 50, and 51.
  • Saturday, Dec. 2, from 10 a.m. to noon at Wootton High School, 2100 Wootton Parkway, Rockville. Transit is available on Ride On routes 56, 301.

The open houses follow Gov. Wes Moore’s announcement of programs that will bring multimodal enhancements to improve transportation — and quality of life — for the state’s travelers.

For those that can’t attend, MDOT is asking for participation in commenting about the planned project. Visit the website for more information.

Kyle Cooper

Weekend and fill-in anchor Kyle Cooper has been with WTOP since 1992. Over those 25 years, Kyle has worked as a street reporter, editor and anchor. Prior to WTOP, Kyle worked at several radio stations in Indiana and at the Indianapolis Star Newspaper.

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