Purple Line Transit Partners announced this week that construction crews on Monday will begin demolishing the former FedEx and Kinkos buildings in a strip mall near the intersection of Colesville Road and East West Highway in downtown Silver Spring.
Crews will be demolishing the buildings from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. each weekday. No weekend work is planned, according to the team of companies building the light-rail line.
The buildings are in the area where the future Purple Line tracks are expected to shift slightly to cross the Metro and MARC tracks and then continue over a bridge across Colesville Road before linking up with the planned Purple Line station next to the Silver Spring Transit Center.
The current Purple Line alignment has the tracks crossing Colesville Road at an angle to arrive at the planned station next to the Silver Spring Transit Center. Two buildings in lower left corner highlighted in yellow are slated to be demolished. Credit: Montgomery Planning Department.
The Rite Aid next to the FedEx building closed two weeks ago and former customers are being redirected to the company’s location at 8701 Georgia Ave. in Silver Spring. Meanwhile, fencing has blocked off sections of the shopping center, with a small portion of the parking lot remaining open near Einstein Bros. Bagels at the corner of Colesville Road and Eat West Highway.
The demolition is the latest Purple Line construction work in the Lyttonsville and Silver Spring areas. Crews recently closed the Lyttonsville Place bridge to replace it with a new one with larger sidewalks and redesigned lanes to allow drivers to drop off passengers near the future Lyttonsville station. They’ve also started initial utility work in downtown Silver Spring where the line will run from the transit center to the Silver Spring Library on Wayne Avenue. And they’ve begun excavation on the Long Branch tunnel east of downtown Silver Spring.
Once completed, the 16.2-mile light-rail line will run from Bethesda to New Carrollton and include 21 stations. State transportation officials estimate it will be completed sometime in 2022. Construction began in August 2017.