The following was shared with us by the Maryland Transportation Authority and the US Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration on behalf of the Chesapeake Bay Crossing Study.
We encourage our partners and supporters to get involved by attending a public hearing and providing public comments on the project. Public comments are currently being accepted through May 10, 2021. Your input will have an impact on the future of mobility in one of the most important corridors of Anne Arundel County.
The Tier 1 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Maryland Transportation Authority’s ongoing Chesapeake Bay Crossing Study is now available for review and comment through May 10, 2021.
The purpose of the Bay Crossing Study Tier 1 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) is to consider two-mile-wide corridors to provide additional capacity and access across the Chesapeake Bay to improve mobility, travel reliability, and safety at the existing Bay Bridge, while considering financial viability and environmental responsibility. The MDTA and the FHWA are following a tiered NEPA process which allows MDTA and FHWA to complete an initial assessment of environmental impacts. The Tier 1 DEIS considers potential corridors on a broad scale and examines potential natural environmental and socio-economic impacts by applying a high-level review of cost, engineering, and environmental inventory data. The study also evaluates modal and operational alternatives including ferry service, bus rapid transit, rail transit, and transportation systems management/travel demand management.
The MDTA and the FHWA are holding public hearings to provide the public additional opportunities to review and comment on the DEIS, which has been prepared pursuant to the federally mandated NEPA. The Public Hearings will be made up of two components – a Public Hearing Virtual Information Room (VIR) and Live Testimony Sessions. The live testimony will consist of four call-in sessions, with two in-person opportunities also available. Each testimony session will include the opportunity to provide public and one-on-one testimony. There will be no formal presentation during the testimony sessions, and no responses to questions will be given. Due to the current COVID-19 health crisis and MDTA’s commitment to protect the public and agency members, the public is encouraged to provide public testimony through the call-in sessions.
The MDTA is accepting comments on the Bay Crossing Study Tier 1 DEIS for the public record through May 10, 2021. Please visit the project website to read the DEIS, provide comments, and view hearing information and materials. All comments received, whether at the hearing through oral testimony or through other methods (project website, email, and mail), will be given equal consideration.
Funded by toll dollars, the Chesapeake Bay Crossing Study: Tier 1 NEPA is expected to be complete in Winter 2021/2022. The final steps are to identify the Selected Corridor Alternative and publish a combined Final Environmental Impact Statement/Record of Decision in collaboration with FHWA.