Governor Martin O'Malley, U.S Senator Ben Cardin, Senator Richard F. Colburn, Delegate Norman H. Conway, and other key elected officials, announced nearly $160 million in new investments for five projects on the Eastern Shore that will create nearly 1,900 jobs, improve safety, and relieve congestion. These projects--made possible by the Transportation Act of 2013--include investing $50 million to begin construction next year on a new high-level, fixed-span bridge to replace the Dover Bridge.
"Maryland is delivering for the Eastern Shore. By investing in these projects, we improve safety, relieve congestion, and make Maryland an even more attractive place for companies to invest," said Governor O'Malley. "Together, with the support of our local partners, we made the better choices to invest in the future of Maryland's transportation network, allowing us to create more than 57,200 jobs for our hardworking families and rebuild our State's infrastructure."
"Robust investments in transportation infrastructure are investments in job creation and economic development across the region," said U.S. Senator Ben Cardin, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Transportation Infrastructure Subcommittee. "The federal government has been such a strong partner throughout Maryland to modernize and improve the safety our transportation choices. Efforts to improve highway safety on these rural roads are incredibly important to the livability of our rural Eastern Shore communities."
With the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act of 2013, which allows Maryland to activate long-term strategies to invest in Maryland's transportation systems, the State is putting people back to work in the transportation industry with $4.4 billion in new investments in the next six years. Maryland will create hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity and provide Marylanders with the transportation infrastructure necessary to grow and prosper for decades to come.
Today's announcement provides nearly $160 million in key projects for the Eastern Shore, including:
- $52 million to construct a new interchange at US 301/ MD 304;
- $50 million to build a MD 331 Dover Bridge replacement;
- $42 million in construction funds to widen and dualize MD 404 from west of MD 309 to Cemetery Road (Phase 1B);
- $11 million for right-of-way acquisition funds to widen and dualize US 113 from Massey Branch to Five Mile Branch Road (Phase 3) No Construction funding available; and
- $3.7 million to start construction of a new roundabout at MD 822 (University of Maryland Eastern Shore Boulevard) and MD 675 (Somerset Avenue) near the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in Princess Anne.
"This funding is about jobs on the Eastern Shore," U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski said. "A reliable and well maintained infrastructure is vital to creating jobs today in construction and jobs tomorrow through economic growth. This is smart funding in Maryland's highways and byways, ports and bridges, that is laying the groundwork for our future."
"By moving forward with critical transportation projects on the Eastern Shore like replacing the severely outdated Dover Bridge, we're making an investment that will support Maryland's growing economy, create thousands of jobs and expand opportunities in our communities," said Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown. "Maryland's future depends on our ability to work together to create a modern infrastructure and transportation network that can serve as the foundation for continued growth, while protecting our environment and natural resources. Today we take another step toward reaching that goal."
"I'm very happy to see such strong transportation investments by the O'Malley-Brown administration on the Eastern Shore, in general, and in Worcester County, in particular," said Delegate Norman H. Conway. "Working to make Route 113 safe for our families has been a priority of mine and many others for a very long time. I'm glad to also see that it's such a high priority for the Governor, and I applaud the investment to make the Lower Shore safer for our residents."
Over the summer months, the State has continued to review statewide transportation project needs and make investment decisions. The Maryland Department of Transportation's draft six-year transportation budget will be published on September 3rd. This budget, known as the Consolidated Transportation Program, will provide a full list of the new projects funded by the Transportation Act. This budget will be posted on MDOT's website at www.mdot.maryland.gov.