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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Intercounty Connector (Mostly) Opens Today

Center Was The Only Environmental Group in the United States to Support the ICC

Along With Support For National Harbor & Woodrow Wilson Bridge Replacement

Most of the $2.5 billion, 18.8-mile Intercounty Connector opened today. Financing for the six-lane toll road linking Interstate 270 in Montgomery County with Interstate 95 in Prince George’s County leveraged the Maryland Transportation Authority’s statewide toll collections. The toll is $4 each way, or up to $24 for tractor-trailers with an E­-ZPass, to travel the entire route.

The ICC provides a vital east-west link long missing from Maryland’s highway network. The ICC directly connects Montgomery’s job-rich I-270 corridor with more affordable places to live, such as Howard and northern Prince George’s counties, while opening up jobs around Baltimore-Washington International Marshall Airport, Fort Meade and Laurel to more Montgomery residents.

The Center believes the investment was well worth it in several key measures: how many vehicles the ICC absorbs from local roads, time saved by motorists who use it, job growth from companies that rely on it to attract workers, and the impact it has on local streams and air pollution.  We believe that local roads will get relief as will the Capital Beltway, families will reunite sooner in the evenings, jobs will be created, there will be very little impact on streams and air pollution will be reduced due to faster trips with less congestion.

The ICC will attract and keep companies in Montgomery that can use the road to reach BWI. State officials say the drive between Gaithersburg and the airport will drop from 71 minutes on local roads to 37 minutes on the ICC. (Wash Post, 12/22/2011, Graphic courtesy Wash Post)

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