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Description

This project will design and construct a new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line on MD 355 between Rockville and Germantown from Montgomery College - Rockville to Montgomery College - Germantown. The project includes dedicated BRT lanes, new BRT stations with level boarding and off-board payment, Transit Signal Priority (TSP), purchase of new zero-emission BRT buses, and other associated pedestrian and bicycle improvements along the corridor. In addition, the project includes the construction of a new transit center near Montgomery College-Rockville, a relocated and expanded Lakeforest Transit Center, and a new operations and maintenance facility to support the project. Planning conducted by the Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA) resulted in several alternatives retained for detailed study in 2017 for BRT along MD 355 from Bethesda to Clarksburg. In 2019, MCDOT completed the planning phase. MCDOT has been working on preliminary engineering and project phasing since 2020. Preliminary engineering of the full corridor from Bethesda to Clarksburg is being completed and then final design and construction for the Central segment will occur. Final design and construction of the North and South segments will occur as a separate project.
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Phase

Preliminary Design Stage

Status

Active
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Budget Snapshot
$358.57M Total
Expenditures/Funding
$347.07M 6 Year Total
Expenditures/Funding
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Location

  • ADDRESS: The MD 355 BRT corridor spans Clarksburg to Bethesda. The Central phase of this project will include the master plan areas of Shady Grove and Germantown, as well as the cities of Rockville and Gaithersburg. A subsequent phase will provide service to the master plan areas of Bethesda, North Bethesda, Garrett Park, White Flint and Clarksburg.
  • PLANNING AREA: Countywide
  • REGIONAL SERVICE AREA: All
  • COUNCIL DISTRICTS: Countywide
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Estimated Schedule

Project planning was completed in FY19. Preliminary engineering began in FY20 and will be completed in FY23. Final design will immediately follow and will be completed in FY25. Construction activities, including right of way acquisition and utility relocations, may begin as early as FY23. Construction will be completed in FY28.
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Cost Change

Increased funding to complete final design of the Central phase from Rockville to Germantown, acquire right of way, relocate utilities, complete construction, and purchase buses. Additional funding increase for design of a new transit center near Montgomery College-Rockville, a relocated and expanded Lakeforest Transit Center, and a new operations and maintenance facility to support the project.
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Justification

MD 355 FLASH will transform mobility options with the implementation of a 22-mile, premium, branded, limited-stop BRT service along MD 355 between Clarksburg and Bethesda. This new service will improve transit travel time and increase opportunity for a broad range of users along a highly congested corridor. MD 355 FLASH will improve passenger transit mobility by connecting riders to high density housing and employment centers. MD 355 FLASH is being phased to accelerate delivery. This phase will implement BRT between Rockville and Germantown. Extensions to Bethesda and Clarksburg will follow.

A new transit center near Montgomery College-Rockville will provide increased space to accommodate both the MD 355 BRT and Veirs Mill Road BRT operations as well as improve overall transit access and operations at this location. The Lakeforest Transit Center is currently undersized for existing operations. Relocation of the transit center closer to MD 355 will allow the critical connection between MD 355 BRT and the numerous local bus routes that stop there, while reducing the diversion for MD 355 BRT and saving passengers travel time. Redevelopment of the former Lakeforest Mall creates an opportunity for joint development considerations that should be explored in the near-term. This project will also address operations and maintenance capacity requirements associated with the fleet expansion and new services by funding the construction of a new BRT-focused transit depot.

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Fiscal Note

Programming of funds through final design and construction improves the project's eligibility for earlier entry into the Federal Transit Administration's Capital Investment Grant program. This project will utilize Op Lanes Maryland revenue proceeds, which have been pledged by the Maryland Department of Transportation to fund high priority public transit projects in Montgomery County. The amended FY21-26 CIP added $6 M in State grants. Additional State aid in FY23 includes State grants for capital projects in Montgomery County programmed during the 2022 State General Assembly Session.
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Disclosures

A pedestrian impact analysis will be performed during design or is in progress. The County Executive asserts that this project conforms to the requirement of relevant local plans, as required by the Maryland Economic Growth, Resource Protection and Planning Act.
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Coordination

Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), Maryland DOT State Highway Administration & Maryland Transit Administration, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Permitting Services, Washington Gas, Pepco, Verizon, Comcast, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Federal Transit Administration, City of Gaithersburg, City of Rockville, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, Commission on People with Disabilities, Transit Advisory Group, Neighborhood and Civic Associations, MD 355 BRT Corridor Advisory Committee

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Budget Snapshot
$358.57M Total
Expenditures/Funding
$347.07M 6 Year Total
Expenditures/Funding
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Project Details
Project NumberP502005
Date Last Modified05/03/22
Administering AgencyTransportation
CategoryTransportation
SubCategoryMass Transit (MCG)
Planning AreaCountywide
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Total Expenditures by Cost Element (000s)
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Total Funding by Source (000s)
EXPENDITURES (000s)
Cost ElementsTotalThru FY21Est FY22Total 6 YearsFY 23FY 24FY 25FY 26FY 27FY 28Beyond 6 Years
Planning, Design and Supervision613702111938949870157001320061307190514025100
Land93528009352810728500017500428001750000
Site Improvements and Utilities35572003557208472810017000200000
Construction14710000147100010000185005010050000185000
Other210000021000000010000110000
Total Expenditures3585702111938934707026428366725023011709084640320100
FUNDING (000s)
Funding SourceTotalThru FY21Est FY22Total 6 YearsFY 23FY 24FY 25FY 26FY 27FY 28Beyond 6 Years
Current Revenue: Mass Transit2550075018000000018000
Federal Aid1588630015886300281296557047398177660
G.O. Bonds00000000000
Impact Tax3064925213900000000
Op Lanes Maryland Transit Funding15997900159979036672221015152037242124440
Recordation Tax Premium (MCG)41861186300000000000
State Aid29928035002642826428000000
Total Funding Sources3585702111938934707026428366725023011709084640320100
APPROPRIATION AND EXPENDITURE DATA ($000s)
Appropriation FY 23 Request22928
Year First AppropriationFY20
Appropriation FY 24 Request36672
Last FY's Cost Estimate24000
Cumulative Appropriation15000
Expenditure / Encumbrances4667
Unencumbered Balance10333