New Renderings Show Changes to Purple Line Station at Silver Spring Transit Center
County planners are supportive of state's design, though questions remain about connectivity to Metro platform
Rendering of the new location for the Purple Line station at the Silver Spring Transit Center
Montgomery County Planning Department
New renderings of the Purple Line station at the Silver Spring Transit Center show how one of the state’s most significant cost-saving changes on the light-rail project will result in a diagonal bridge over Colesville Road and a longer walk for passengers looking to connect to the Metro Red Line platform.
The renderings, released by the Montgomery County Planning Department before the changes go before the Planning Board next week, more clearly explain how the station’s new location on the north side of the Transit Center will look. The original plan for the Purple Line station was to put it between the Transit Center and Metro platform.
The state says it saved nearly $30 million on the 16-mile light-rail from Bethesda to New Carrollton by changing the Silver Spring plans, among the most significant changes the state made before reaching a final agreement with Purple Line Transit Partners, the team of construction companies and other firms selected to finish designing the system as well as build and operate it.
Renderings via Montgomery County Planning Department
County planners are recommending the Planning Board approve the changes during its nonbinding mandatory referral review June 16. But they did question “the increase in time it will take to transfer between the Purple Line and Red Line although it is unclear what that increase is estimated to be at this point in the design process.”
Planners also remarked that the Purple Line bridge over Colesville Road will now be “more visually prominent,” so the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) should consider design treatments for the bridge and bridge pillars.
Planners also said the existing lawn to the north of the Transit Center should be preserved as much as possible for development. Metro owns the site and MTA told planners any schedule for building on it could be affected by Purple Line construction, which is expected to start late this year and last through 2022.
Planners would also like MTA officials to clarify whether the Purple Line station will still include two escalators from the platform level to street level and to amend its Forest Conservation Plan because the new station location may affect trees along Ramsey Avenue.
Via Montgomery County Planning Department