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MDOT MTA and Local Partners Make Progress on Transit Improvements

Fall 2021 Regional Transit Plan update

Since publishing the Central Maryland Regional Transit Plan in Fall 2020, MDOT MTA along with its partners in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Harford County, and Howard County have been working to improve today’s transit conditions while simultaneously developing new connections for the future. In this Fall 2021 update, we’d like to share updates on projects where you’ll see immediate changes as well as ones that are focused on long-term goals. If you’ve been following the news recently, you know we have lots of announcements to share! Jump to our updates: Long-term planning efforts:

Immediate transit infrastructure improvements:

Regional Transit Corridor Studies MDOT MTA is currently working with Baltimore City, Baltimore County, and Howard County to study two early opportunity transit corridors identified in the 2020 Central Maryland Regional Transit Plan. Check out this video for a progress update on options for new transit connections in the East-West corridor between Bayview and Ellicott City, and in the North-South corridor between Towson and downtown Baltimore. Regional Transit Plan Touchpoints Visit the Transit Corridors website to learn more about how these corridors were chosen as well as upcoming opportunities for public engagement in 2022, when we'll share detailed information about how a range of alternatives score across various measures of effectiveness.

Corridor Study Schedule and Process Spring 2021 COLLABORATE - Develop community-based transit goals for each corridor Summer 2021 PROPOSE - Present and discuss potential routes and modes Fall 2021 EVALUATE - Score alternatives based on cost, ridership, and community priorities Spring 2022 ENGAGE - Gather feedback and insight on alternatives from transit riders, advocates, and other stakeholders Summer 2022 RECOMMEND - Present and discuss potential routes and modes RAISE Program East-West Priority Corridor While the above mentioned Regional Transit Corridor Studies represent long-term efforts aimed at building entirely new transit connections, MDOT MTA and Baltimore City Department of Transportation (BCDOT) recently announced a partnership to facilitate faster and more reliable transit trips between the Fox Ridge community in eastern Baltimore County through downtown Baltimore and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in western Baltimore County. The $50 million project will be funded by a $22 million grant from the United States Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) 2021 Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program, as well as a $18 million investment from the Maryland Department of Transportation and $10 million from the Baltimore City Department of Transportation.

The “RAISE East-West Priority Corridor” project will make immediate improvements to existing infrastructure, including dedicated bus lanes, bus stop amenities, and bicycle/pedestrian connections, to support existing service on CityLink Blue and Orange routes. Meanwhile, the “East-West Regional Transit Corridor Study” is considering potential investments in totally new transit service that would require hundreds of millions and potentially billions of dollars. North Avenue Rising Dedicated Bus Lanes In November 2021, MDOT MTA activated seven miles of new dedicated bus lanes with transit signal priority (TSP) to improve bus travel times and reliability along North Avenue in Baltimore as part of the North Avenue Rising revitalization project. You can find more information about the bus lanes at


In addition to dedicated bus lanes, the $27.3 million North Avenue Rising project has made improvements throughout the corridor since 2017. These include enhancements to the Penn-North Metro SubwayLink station, safety and rider-comfort improvements at major bus stops and sidewalks, bike facilities, streetscaping and roadway repaving. Last month, a new mural highlighting the history and culture of the Penn-North community was completed for the Penn-North Metro SubwayLink station by Baltimore artist Megan Lewis. The project’s construction completion date has been extended to June 30, 2022 and additional transportation investments will be made along North Avenue through early 2022. Fast Forward: Customer Experience Enhancement Project Also in November 2021, MDOT MTA launched its Fast Forward: Customer Experience Enhancement Project, a $43 million initiative funded by the passage of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Fast Forward is a wide-ranging effort that focuses on improving transit reliability, travel times and customer safety and access, with the overall goal to enhance the MDOT MTA passenger’s complete transit experience from door to door. Improvements planned as part of the Fast Forward: Customer Experience Enhancement Project include:

  • designing and constructing additional dedicated bus lanes

  • implementing transit signal prioritization

  • making lane modifications that promote faster, more efficient transit

  • creating new and enhanced transit hubs

  • adding more bus shelters

  • making ADA and pedestrian safety improvements near bus stops

  • improving signage to convey real-time information

  • enhancing wayfinding along Light Rail routes.

These investments will be implemented with an accelerated schedule beginning in 2021and continuing through 2022 to strategically improve transit customers experience along the region’s most heavily traveled traffic and transit corridors. VISIT THE RTP WEBSITE at rtp.mta.maryland.gov CALL THE PROJECT TEAM at (443) 475-0687 EMAIL THE PROJECT TEAM at rtp@mta.maryland.gov

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