Purple Line Public Meetings

The MTA has released a schedule of public meetings this month: “These meetings will include updated information from the Open Houses held this past winter and will be the last round of large public meetings before the Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (AA/DEIS) is released this fall.”

The College Park meeting is this Thursday, May 8th at 5 p.m. at the City Hall.

See the project website for the full schedule, including meetings in Bethesda, Silver Spring, Landover Hills, and Langley Park.

8 thoughts on “Purple Line Public Meetings”

  1. There is no meeting in Landover. The meeting will be held in Landover Hills, a small town (probably about the size of Chevy Chase but with considerably less money) about a half-mile from the New Carrollton Metro Station. Consider it part of New Carrollton, but Landover is several miles south.

  2. For that matter, the Langley Park meeting is actually technically in Hyattsville.

  3. Langley Park is an unincorporated part of the “greater” Hyattsville area (blame the USPS/Census Bureau) – not the City of Hyattsville. Langley Park is serviced by the County only.

    Landover Hills is an incorporated town (w/ its own Public Works, Police, Town Council, etc.). See – http://www.lhills.sailorsite.net/

  4. On Paper, the Purple Line is a great idea. It addresses all the major issues that college park and the University of Maryland are currently enduring. If a purple line were to exist, college park could become alive with activity. Commuters from adjacent counties, such as Montgomery County, can work, study and contribute to the town, thus increasing the tax base and economic flow. In addition, traffic will greatly decrease because of the lesser amount of people driving. In times of high gas prices and “going green” the purple line just makes sense. Bio-friendly light rails will cut down car emissions greatly if most people commute using the Purple line rather than drive. We will also break a dependency that the common citizen has on rising gas prices.
    Another great concern that the purple line addresses is the housing situation at Maryland. Year after year, the University of Maryland has become over crowded with students who are forced to fend for themselves when it comes to a place they can rest their head. As a freshmen connection student, I was forced to either find a place to live near the campus or commute from home. If a Purple line existed, the idea behind the crisis is people can find off campus housing further away and commute using the Purple Line. People who live in the neighboring communities who wish to attend University of Maryland can also disregard the cumbersome efforts of finding the perfect off campus housing and commute from their home.
    However we cannot forget the many drawbacks that the Purple Line also creates. Just recently, on May 5th, a facilities management employee in the plant science building was assaulted and had the keys to the building stolen. After talking to several people, a major concern with the creation of a purple line is the ease at which dangerous strangers can roam campus freely to cause harm. The police report on May 5th claims that the suspect was not a student but rather in his mid 30s. This is not an isolated incident either. We all remember the noose on the tree and the several robberies that constantly occur down route 1. Sure people can come on to campus quite easily if they wanted to walk but the creation of the Purple Line just makes it that much easier. I am not saying that this paranoia that dangerous criminals can prey on students easier is a sole reason to not create the Purple Line, but it is something that needs to be addressed and perfected.
    Another concern of the Purple Line is aesthetics. In the May 15th front page of the diamondback, an article headline reads, “Purple Line may appease admin.” However the sub-headline reads, “Removal of bushes railings could combat criticism about aesthetics.” There is attractiveness to the campus that can be ruined if the Purple Line is instituted. Do we really want a train going through the middle of campus making noise and making it harder for students to maneuver through campus? Again I am not saying it is not possible but having the Purple Line go right through campus drive might make the campus look cluttered, ugly and create a negative externality on the students who appreciated its aesthetic appeal. Some colleges have a great appeal solely based on the beauty of the campus.
    I am still a strong supporter of the Purple Line but I feel it is such a big project that the many concerns of the students should be addressed. This is something that will impact the campus forever and we need to make sure that the impact is mainly positive. The article in the Purple Line addresses the aesthetics issue which is comforting but people just want to make sure that the project is not rushed. All in all I’m optimistic and can’t wait to see the finished project.

  5. After doing some research on the purple line, its proposed path from Bethesda through Silver Spring and eventually ending in New Carrolton, and talking to a Criminal Justice professor here at the University of Maryland, I think that the crime issue is really not even an issue at all (along with several others).

    To get a better understanding of where people using the purple line lived, I got the proposed path off the official purple line website and traveled the path as best I could in my car taking pictures of the houses surround the areas where the proposed stations would be located. To my astonishment, there were not rundown bad areas that people had told me existed. I expected to find cars on blocks, litter in the front yard, graffiti on the houses, but many of the houses, were small cape cods with landscaped front yards, each with their own individual character. Many of the areas where new purple line stations were planned actually looked nicer than many of the neighborhoods filled with Maryland students.

    The Criminal Justice professor also added that he believed that the impact on crime on campus would be very small if any. He said that we already have metro close enough to campus to know the effects of metro on crime. If criminals are using metro now, they will continue to use metro in the future, but just because a metro line runs through the University of Maryland campus, does not mean it will entice criminals to come to Maryland and target students. We are also all used to the crime reports that at some points in the year flood our inbox, but many of them include the car they ran hopped into after they committed the crime or a direction they ran. Very few include, they ran towards metro to catch a train. Even if they did, all of metro facilities are heavily monitored by cameras and would actually help in the apprehension of suspects if they did decide to use metro as a means of transportation.

    Another issue raised is the aesthetics of the Purple line on the campus. I believe that the school administrators would never allow the purple line to be an eye sore on campus. The removal of railings and bushes could be replaced by the ever present brick walls that are all over the campus and fit in. We also have a large architecture and landscape architecture school that could help to tackle any aesthetic problems that the purple line might make.

    The maneuverability of students with the purple line in place again is another issue brought up; however, if students can walk through campus now with all the cars, buses, and bikes, then hopefully they will be able to see a large light rail train approaching. They will also have to realize, that the light rail trains are not like cars and buses and do not stop on a dime. People crossing the street may have to learn to use cross walks (I Know).

    The only issue I see, and it’s not really an issue, but more of an inconvenience is the time and disruption of campus due to construction. Most construction projects take longer than anticipated and the true impact it will have on campus will only be realized when it is taking place. Many of the students on campus now will not still be there when construction starts. Sure there is construction all the time on campus now, but usually it is not so big as to cut campus in half as would construction on Campus Drive.

    Ultimately, I feel that the Purple Line will be an invaluable improvement to the campus because of all the benefits that were not even mention in this posting, and many of the issues people bring up, are not even really issues when one looks below the surface. This campus has a fear of crime and opponents to the Purple Line are using it to scare you away from all the benefits that will come.

  6. A few years back when there was a rash of crime on campus one campus official was noted as saying: “we are located near some very poor impoverished areas and unfortunately our students are viewed as easy prey” ( or something to that effect )

    i think people are concerned by the stretch of Univ Blvd from the western edge of campus near Univ College going west out towards Silver Spring. sadly, it has taken on a rather tough appearance once you get west of the power lines and the Adelphi Plaza

    i also hear concern over the overhead wires particularly as they would pass directly in front of 2 heavily photographed white columned buildings on the “M Circle”

    i do think the images that the planners are using have helped quite a bit to mitigate some of that last concern. i think it is just going to take time. i dont think going near the chapel (“the prienkert alignment”) is a good idea. in fact, quite the opposite. that is one of the campus’ greatest scenic assets.

    i think having the line come through east campus and up campus drive would do so much to improve the vitality of the area and make east campus a smashing success (because it would make it easy to pop back and forth between the east campus town center and the center of campus…..would be great on game day in the fall to entice people down after a game – not to mention would make it easier to get on and off campus)

Comments are closed.