The Queen Anne’s Conservation Association (QACA) today made a formal request to inspect Chesapeake Bay Bridge traffic management records of the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA). Filed pursuant to the Maryland Public Information Act (MPIA), the request seeks documents that will shed light on MDTA’s decisions regarding congestion management strategies with the potential to reduce back-ups at the Bridge.
Included in the QACA request are MDTA documents pertaining to possible use of peak period variable tolls at the Bridge; active management, rapid deployment, and bus/truck restrictions for the Bridge’s reversible lane; and accident/incident management on the Bridge.
Jay Falstad, QACA Executive Director stated:
“Based on input from our traffic consultant AKRF, Inc., we have for some time had serious questions as to why methods used elsewhere in the country to mitigate peak traffic congestion on roads and bridges are not part of MDTA’s tool-kit for the Bay Bridge spans. Now MDTA has issued an environmental impact statement openly stating that these kinds of traffic management strategies ‘were eliminated from further consideration as stand-alone alternatives’ to building a new larger bridge.
“It may well be that advanced traffic management is off the table at MDTA, but it is crucial for the public and the next Governor to understand the full range of options for dealing with Bay Bridge back-ups. A new eight-lane bridge across the Bay would be costly, disruptive, and environmentally damaging in ways that MDTA has yet to acknowledge.
“AKRF’s latest report for QACA focused on the massive changes that will have to be made to the roadways connecting to a new bridge. The AKRF studies are lifting the curtain on what MDTA is keeping to itself, but much still needs to come to light. Our MPIA request today is one more step toward that goal.”