The Red Line transit project, a proposed 14-mile, east-west, light rail system now estimated to cost $2.5 billion, took another step forward today.
The Baltimore Red Line Final Environmental Impact Statement, prepared by the Federal Transit Administration and the Maryland Transit Administration is available for 45 days of public review.
The Red Line study and evaluation summarizes the transportation and environmental impacts related to the implementation of the proposed transit line, which would connect Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and Greektown in East Baltimore with Woodlawn and the Social Security Administration in Baltimore County.
The document, which will be available at local libraries, among other locations, can also be found online here.
According to the study, the projected light rail system would attract more than 50,000 riders a day by 2035 while operating from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m., Monday thru Friday; 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturdays; and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sundays. Light rail trains would be designed for a top speed of 55 miles-per-hour, but actual speeds would vary from segment to segment.
All trains would stop at each of the planned 19 stations along the route — with no “express” trains.
Initiated by an MTA Study Team in community discussions a decade ago, in October the Red Line project was among 14 infrastructure projects around the country fast-tracked for environmental review. Following the public review, the FTA is expected to issue a Record of Decision on the project in February. A that point, the final design process would begin, according to the Red Line project’s timeline.
Construction is slated to begin in 2015, with the most of the construction to be complete by late 2020, and first line open in 2021.