Officials from Maryland’s Department of Transportation are scheduled to meet at 2:30 pm on November 1 with the Queen Anne’s County Commissioners in the Liberty Building regarding the county’s highway project priorities for 2011-2016. The meeting is expected to be led by Beverley K. Swaim-Staley, Maryland transportation secretary.
At a citizens’ rally on September 27 in response to the recent vehicular death of Connor Rice, Commissioner Phil Dumenil and County Administrator Gregg Todd urged all those at the rally to attend the November 1 meeting so their voices can be heard concerning safety at the intersection. Rice was a Queen Anne’s County High student on his way to school when his vehicle was struck at the intersection of U.S. Route 301 and state Route 304. As early as February 1998, the county commissioners requested MDOT to accelerate planning and engineering for the construction of an overpass at the intersection.
In a September 27 memo to the county commissioners, Queen Anne’s County Public Works Director, Todd Mohn, outlined the county’s priority highway projects, including the completion of the design and funding acquisition to construct an overpass interchange at the 301/304 intersection. Currently, state highway construction crews are working to install J-turns in an attempt to create a safer traffic flow.
A number of other projects also are considered top priorities:
• The county is seeking restoration of highway user fund revenue distribution from the state to local governments. The county has lost about $5-million a year to maintain its roads since the state stopped distributing its gasoline tax revenue.
• A request for the construction of an overpass interchange at U.S. Route 50 and state Route 213, a busy intersection fronting Chesapeake College’s Wye Mills campus.
• The Cox Creek Connector and Dundee Overpass is needed to “provide both safety improvements and to allow for necessary highway system alternatives for local and emergency traffic mobility.”
• A new traffic signal at Carmichael Road and Route 50 with geometric improvements and service road connections.
• Funding for streetscape work in Stevensville.
• Maintaining the Kent Island Transit system.
• Construction of a state Route 18 and Postal Road roundabout.
• Maintaining funding for the county’s Rural Transit Program.