The Purple Line may be the fast public transit connection that finally runs through Montgomery and Prince George's County but it sure is getting Maryland residents riled up on its path to completion. Some hot issues (particularly the displacement of homes and businesses) had already been raised over the summer, but a couple of new ones have popped up since then. Let's take a quick look at some of the new and updated Purple Line controversies.
· Chevy Chase residents and councilmembers actively oppose the project. When does NIMBY-ism of people who don't want to deal with transit-associated noise levels get particularly hairy? When the town council unanimously votes to hire a legal consultant to respond to the Final Environmental Impact Statement, that's when. One councilman, John Bickerman, has essentially said that the way to kill the Purple Line is to find ways to delay it interminably.
· Allegations of preferential treatment have come up. Nobody wants a train line going through their property so Maryland and Montgomery County made a deal with the Columbia Country Club to alter the track so as to preserve holes on their golf course. In return, Columbia Country Club will drop their litigation threats and all opposition to the project. What concerns the Montgomery County Councilmembers is that they didn't know about this deal until after the fact and several believe that this looks like favoritism toward influential and powerful clubs.
· The trials and tribulations of the poor Silver Spring Transit Center continue. This colossal case of arrested development is its own separate problem, but it relates. But hey, if someone correctly guesses when the Transit Center will open for bus service, they can win free dinner!
· Purple Line-Country Club Settlement Raises 'Preferential Treatment' Concerns [Patch]
· Town of Chevy Chase Will Hire Consultants To Respond To Purple Line Report [BethesdaNow]
· Silver Spring Transit Center: hard to know whether to laugh or cry [WaPo]
· Current Controversy Count For the Upcoming Purple Line [CDC]