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Would it be less expensive to build a bike/pedestrian overpass instead? That would allow cyclists and pedestrians to cross Wisconsin safely while avoiding the large expense of putting the trail in the tunnel.

The overpass could start on Elm St., cross Wisconsin, and end on Waverly St. on the east side of Wisconsin. The trail could follow Waverly, turn right on Montgomery Ave. and turn right again on Pearl St. From there, there could be a left turn back onto the off-road trail.

A short bike/ped overpass has to be less expensive than the tunnel option. It might not be ideal but the significant savings could make it more likely that the trail (and the Purple Line) is actually built this century.

I talked to a state rep I know. He said this has been suspected for a long time, but not articulated until now.

...and it's the ICC trail all over again! Gain support for the project then find reasons to pull the bicycle trail. Way to go anti-bicycle Maryland.

The bike lobby crowd - led by WABA - has been played for suckers by developers for years now. In exchange for a hearty endorsement of the Purple Line WABA leaders got bupkis ... no commitment from the state that they'd pay for a new CCT between Bethesda and Silver Spring. And now, guess what, the real cost of the so-called new trail is tens of millions more that no-one ... not the state or the county ... wants to pay. Even "Retreat" Roger Berliner is vowing "interesting negotiations" on this. Wow. Now there's a line in the sand for you. When will WABA wake up, smell the coffee and realize it's been had? It's time to say no to the Purple Line. Period.

Joe, it's not the ICC trail again. There is simply no way, politically, that they can build the Purple Line without the trail. People will go absolutely ballistic. Save the Trail will be an accurate statement and people will rally around it. They'll make Occupy Wall Street look like a book club.

And RTC will almost surely sue. They'll argue that turning the ROW can return to heavy rail, but that converting it to transit without the trail violates the law. It's never been tested, but they've been setting that up for awhile.

They're not pulling the trail. They're just noting that the trail and train in the tunnel is very expensive. That doesn't even mean they won't do it, though it is worth looking at. $40 million would build a pretty sweet bike share system.

WS, WABA got a commitment from the state that they would build the improved CCT and MoCo would pay for it. What has been discovered is that the tunnel is very expensive. That's a very short part of the trail. Many cyclists might be willing to bike around the tunnel if it means a paved trail all the way to Silver Spring without grade crossings at Jones Mill or Conn Ave.

WABA has not been played for suckers - not unless you think the state knew that the trail in the tunnel would cost more and hid it. Is that your accusation? Because that might even be criminal and requires more proof than crazy conspiracy claims.

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