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"Maryland transportation officials are moving forward with plans for its Beltway widening project by issuing a request for proposals to four developers," reports Briana Adhikusuma.
The planned expansion of I-495 and I-270 would add managed lanes through a public -private partnership at a price between $9 billion to $11 billion. According to Adhikusuma, the project "has been met with opposition in the last year from county officials, environmental activists, the U.S. Navy and county residents," in recent months. (Planetizen noted skepticism and opposition for the project in September and October this year.) The project's Draft Environmental Impact Statement, published in July 2020 and closed for public comment the following November, includes six alternatives for the Beltway widening, according to Adhikusuma, "most of which recommend adding two lanes on either side of I-495 and I-270 to accommodate high-occupancy vehicles and those opting to pay tolls."
"Financial proposals are due on Jan. 8. A Phase 1 developer is expected to be selected by Feb. 1."