Maryland has decided to avoid wasting $11 billion on a harmful and unnecessary highway expansion.
On May 13, the Maryland Department of Transportation announced a decision to significantly reduce the scope of a proposed widening project for I-270, I-495 and the Capital Beltway. Not only is the car-dependent transportation sector Maryland’s No. 1 source of greenhouse gas emissions, but it also results in about 500 vehicle-crash deaths every year. And those problems are only exacerbated by highway expansions, which tend to worsen traffic congestion rather than alleviate it.
Maryland PIRG identified the Capital Beltway project as one of the country’s most wasteful highway “boondoggles” back in 2018.
“The dramatic downsizing of the Capital Beltway expansion is a huge victory for Marylanders, but it’s time to completely scrap this expansion project,” said Maryland PIRG State Director Emily Scarr. “Maryland needs to take a fresh approach to transportation spending and invest in healthier, cleaner and more sustainable options such as electric vehicles, public transit, biking and walking.”
Tell your legislators to stand up to wasteful highway expansion plans
The dramatic downsizing of the Capital Beltway expansion is a huge victory for Marylanders, but it’s time to completely scrap this and other wasteful highway "boondoggles." Call on your legislators to shelve plans for these projects and instead invest in providing more transportation options and maintaining the roads we have.
Content Creator, Editorial & Creative Team, The Public Interest Network
Aaron writes and designs materials with the Creative Team for The Public Interest Network for U.S. PIRG. Aaron lives in Arlington, Massachusetts, and spends his spare time playing drums and going for long walks.