Maryland Beltway Project Tentatively Moves Forward

The state transit authority has granted preliminary approval to the revised plan to expand the Capital Beltway and add new high-occupancy and toll lanes.

June 21, 2021, 6:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

"The Maryland Transit Authority Board granted preliminary approval Tuesday to an amended project that will expand the Beltway around the American Legion Bridge" and "add two high-occupancy toll managed lanes in each direction on the bridge from I-270 to I-370 in the northern region," writes Dominique Maria Bonessi for DCist. "The project would also expand a 12-mile stretch on I-270 from the American Legion Bridge through Gaithersburg. Unlike previous iterations of the Beltway expansion plan, the current proposal does not include the eastern portions of the Beltway in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties."

After releasing a draft Environmental Impact Assessment last year, the agency scaled back the project in May 2021 after "months of opposition from local officials, residents and environmental advocates." The proposal "thas faced numerous criticisms in recent years, as the project worked through its draft environmental impact statement and went out to bid," including "concerns about uncertain environmental impacts, a lack of transit plans in the project, and the potential failure of another public-private partnership."

Director of the Maryland Department of Transportation and chair of the transit board Greg Slater "told board members in a virtual meeting that the current project does not displace any properties, exists mostly within its current footprint, and increases the throughput of cars in 2045 by up to 50%."

Tuesday, June 8, 2021 in DCist


Opinion: Aging Population, Declining Fertility Requires Long-Term Investments

Faced with the dire consequences of a one-two punch of aging populations and declining birthrates, one writer has suggestions for how policy can help ensure a better future.

August 9, 2022 - Financial Times


The Surprising Oil Tax in the Inflation Reduction Act

President Biden has made reducing gas prices paramount in his administration, so it was likely a surprise to hear a Republican senator last Sunday warn TV viewers that a revived and increased oil fee in the climate bill will increase their gas costs.

August 15, 2022 - Bloomberg News

People gather on a street with no cars during the L.E.A.F. Festival of Flowers in the Meatpacking District of New York City.

The Tide Has Turned Against Open Streets

Once a promising development for advocates pushing for a less car-centric future in cities, the open streets movement has ceded significant ground to cars since the height of the pandemic.

August 14, 2022 - The New York Times

110 Freeway

Opinion: Los Angeles Transportation Plan Will Increase Driving

L.A. Metro’s plan to add hundreds of miles of new traffic lanes is projected to increase carbon emissions by 10 million metric tons.

August 18 - Los Angeles Times

Flooding at the Whitehall Street station, New York

How Extreme Weather Threatens Transit Systems

As weather events become more intense and unpredictable, transit agencies must take steps to protect their aging infrastructure from flooding, storms, and extreme heat.

August 18 - Next City

Close-up of car tailpipe emitting smoke

Federal Rule Would Require Regional Emissions Reduction Targets

A rule shelved during the Trump administration would require states and metropolitan areas to set targets for reducing tailpipe emissions, but advocates say it doesn’t go far enough to mandate results.

August 18 - Governing

Assistant or Associate Professor of Urban Design

Harvard University Graduate School of Design

Professor of Urban Planning

Harvard University Graduate School of Design

Professor of Urban Design and/or Urban Planning

Harvard University Graduate School of Design

New Cityscape Explores Methods of Measuring Blight

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

2022 National Cohousing Conference

Cohousing Association of the US

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Hand Drawing Master Plans

This course aims to provide an introduction into Urban Design Sketching focused on how to hand draw master plans using a mix of colored markers.