Forging a Strategy for Development along the Purple Line

COLLEGE PARK, MD—Officials from the State of Maryland and Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties have joined forces with the Purple Line Corridor Coalition (PLCC) and stakeholders to develop a Purple Line Community Compact. The compact will articulate a livability strategy designed to foster vibrant economic and community development for those who live and work along the 16-mile corridor. Leaders from community organizations, civic associations, business and labor associations, and others with a stake in the Purple Line corridor will have an opportunity to help develop the compact through two community workshops this fall.

“This agreement is a critical step in moving the Purple Line project forward — a project that ensures more transportation options for Prince George’s and Montgomery counties and creates sustainable, family-supporting jobs for more Maryland families and connected communities,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “Working together with our dynamic coalition of stakeholders, non-profits, business interests, and many others, we’ll establish a 21st century transportation network worthy of a modern economy and secure a better transportation future for our State.”

“This compact will be an important part of building a comprehensive and sustainable strategy for the communities along the Purple Line, which is going to bring 60,000 riders a day back and forth between Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties while creating over 10,000 jobs for Maryland’s workers,” said Lt. Governor Anthony Brown. “By partnering with County leaders, local businesses, residents, and community organizations, we’ll ensure that we’re strengthening all of our neighborhoods while helping to grow our economy.”

The Purple Line Community Compact will present a common vision for the future of the corridor—revitalizing and stabilizing mixed income neighborhoods, preserving community assets, supporting small businesses, connecting workers to jobs and creating healthy and vibrant communities—and a strategy for achieving that vision.

In addition, the compact represents an opportunity to leverage the funding, construction and operation of the Purple Line to achieve benefits throughout the communities along its route.

Modeled after other compacts written in Seattle and Baltimore as part of major transit projects, the compact will be developed through an inclusive public process in the form of community workshops, led by committed partners invested in the corridor. The workshops will encourage attendees to participate in activities designed to provide input for the contents of the Purple Line Compact. Community leaders are encouraged to attend both workshops to contribute at every stage of the compact development.

Purple Line Community COMPACT Workshop Session 1
Date: October 25, 2014
Time: 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Location: Silver Spring Civic Building, One Veterans Plaza, Silver Spring, MD

Session 1 Registration Link

Purple Line Community COMPACT Workshop Session 2
Date: November 17, 2014
Time: 4:00 to 6:00 PM
Location: Felegy Elementary School, 6110 Editors Park Drive, Hyattsville, MD

Session 2 Registration Link

“The Purple Line ranks as one of the most significant public infrastructure projects of our day,” said Rushern Baker, Prince George’s County Executive. “This multi-billion dollar effort will reflect the collective vision of an east-west public transit connector that will revitalize and grow our communities for future generations of Prince Georgians.”

“Montgomery County is committed to moving the Purple Line forward in a way consistent with job creation and maintaining and improving the quality of life in our neighborhoods,” said Ike Leggett, Montgomery County Executive.

Advocacy for the Purple Line Compact has been led by the Fair Development Coalition formed in 2010 by CASA de Maryland, Maryland’s leading immigrant rights organization, which urges support for locally-owned, independent businesses, a mix of housing stock, and job and workforce development opportunities for local residents. The Fair Development Coalition has supported the creation and establishment of the compact since 2013 and has partnered with unions, non-profits, faith leaders, education institutions, business associations and many more to secure the endorsement of the compact. CASA de Maryland and the Fair Development Coalition will host a Compact Community Rally to precede the workshops on October 9, 2014, 6:30 PM at St. Camillus Church in Silver Spring.

“The Purple Line will determine where many of our community members live, work and play,” said Gustavo Torres, Executive Director of CASA de Maryland. “It is critical we advance an equity agenda that is community-centered that gives everyone a voice in shaping and stimulating the vibrant and thriving community they live in. We look forward to working with all stakeholders to ensure our Purple Line communities have homes that are affordable with access to jobs and local and independent businesses are embraced and empowered.”

Representatives from the State, Montgomery County, Prince Georges’ County and the PLCC are expected to sign the compact by year’s end. Cities, towns, community organizations and stakeholder groups across the corridor also will be encouraged to sign the compact.

Community compacts are non-binding agreements that state the intent of signatories to work together toward common objectives. The development of the Purple Line Community Compact will build on the March 2014 “Beyond the Tracks” workshop findings.

The Purple Line Corridor Coalition was formed in June 2013 by the National Center for Smart Growth at the University of Maryland and represents stakeholders from communities, nonprofits and businesses along the Purple Line corridor. The PLCC’s mission is to ensure that investments in the Purple Line will achieve the maximum economic, social, and environmental benefits to the residents and businesses of the corridor.

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