RFI for $4bn Maryland project out

In the wake of passing P3 legislation, the ‘Old Line State’ is eager for feedback on a light rail project.

Maryland is open to hearing if the private sector has a take on a potential light rail transit (LRT) project the US Mid-Atlantic state is thinking of doing in Baltimore.

The ‘Old Line State’ published a request for information (RFI) for a $4 billion LRT project. The RFI has a Wednesday, May 8, deadline. The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA), the transit authority for the state, is handling procurement.

The two-part project would involve delivering a 16-mile ‘National Capital Purple Line’ for $2.5 billion and a 14-mile ‘Baltimore Red Line’ for $1.8 billion. The state is hoping to begin work on the project in 2015, and would like service to commence in 2020.

The RFI was published shortly after Maryland signed enabling public-private partnership (PPP or P3) legislation into effect.

The resultant ‘2013 Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act’ is being billed as a creation of the ‘O’Malley-Brown Administration.’ Governor Martin O’Malley approved the law, championed by Anthony Brown.

The state has credited its P3 law as able “to attract private investment in public infrastructure by creating a strong, predictable and transparent framework”.

O’Malley, a Democrat elected in 2006, has said the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act “will generate $4.4 billion for transportation” between now and 2019.

The RFI, according to Maryland, is the “first outreach effort” to the private sector under the new law.

The LRT project has been conceived for “addressing congestion”.