Montgomery County developer Robert Eisinger says he has found a fast, reliable and cost-effective way to ease traffic on Interstate 270: Get tens of thousands of motorists traveling from the outer suburbs to switch to a monorail between Frederick and the Shady Grove Metro station.
Eisinger said he knows the word monorail conjures images of amusement park rides more suitable for ferrying passengers around Disney World than carrying commuters through the suburbs of the nation’s capital.
But he said a consultant’s study, paid for by him and private contributors, found that a 27-mile monorail would be environmentally friendly and cost $3.4 billion — significantly less per mile than building a light-rail line or extending Metro’s Red Line. Most importantly, he said, a monorail would fit within the I-270 right of way, leaving homes and backyards untouched and sparing the state the potentially hefty expense of acquiring private property.
He envisions trains zooming above highway traffic, making the trip between Frederick and Shady Grove in 31 minutes via six stations and someday extending south to Bethesda and across the Potomac River into Northern Virginia. He does not have a plan for how to pay for the project, but said that it probably would entail a public-private partnership. Click here to continue reading…
Credit: Katherine Shaver | The Baltimore Sun