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MD 355 Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Project

This page contains an overview of the Maryland 355 (MD 355) BRT project, as well as important reference documents. It also contains information related to its  open houses. Information on Corridor Advisory Committee (CAC) meetings can be found here.

At the end of this page, we invite the public to review the information presented here, especially the information corresponding to the last open house, and submit comment using the form below. Community input is vitally important to the MD 355 project and your interest and participation are greatly appreciated.

 

Project Overview

  • The MD 355 Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) will provide upgraded, frequent, and reliable service between downtown Bethesda and Clarksburg along the MD 355 (Wisconsin Avenue/Rockville Pike/Frederick Road) corridor.
  • The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is studying different alternatives for the MD 355 BRT. Upon completion of the study, MCDOT will identify a single “Recommended Alternative” – which includes the BRT route, station locations, and engineering features – that can be advanced toward design and implementation in phases.
  • The MD 355 BRT will be part of the County’s Flash BRT system with amenities like upgraded stations, real-time information, free Wi-fi, and quick boarding features.

About the Project

 

 

Project Information

The new BRT service on MD 355 between Bethesda and Clarksburg will be designed to meet the needs of residents, businesses, and visitors along this busy route. This project is part of the Countywide Transit Corridors Functional Master Plan.

There are several major existing and planned activity centers along the MD 355 corridor that have importance for the entire county and region. The MD 355 BRT will improve frequent transit connections between the corridor and destinations within Montgomery County and other parts of the region.

BRT Features and Amenities Include

  • Frequent, reliable service
  • Dedicated lanes, where feasible
  • New, enhanced vehicles that accommodate bicycles onboard and are equipped with Wi-Fi and USB ports
  • New, comfortable stations that provide weather protection, pre-payment stations, and real-time transit information (via message boards)
  • Community-friendly design with enhanced pedestrian and bicycle facilities
  • Level boarding through all doors, allowing for easy boarding and alighting for all riders, including those in wheelchairs
  • Transit Signal Priority (TSP) to support faster and more reliable BRT operations

 

Over the past decade, MCDOT and the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, as well as the Cities of Gaithersburg and Rockville, have completed land use and transportation studies advancing the concept for the BRT. These support the vision of transforming the corridor into a series of walkable and prosperous nodes of commercial, residential, and civic land uses and activities.

From 2015 to 2017, the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) conducted a study (“Phase 1”) to identify options for the MD 355 BRT. Through that study, MDOT identified several options, called Conceptual Alternatives, for the BRT. MCDOT is now leading Phase 2 of the study, which involves further study and evaluation of the Conceptual Alternatives from Phase 1 to identify one Recommended Alternative for the BRT.

 

Phase 2 Information

To identify the Recommended Alternative in Phase 2, MCDOT will be looking at various alternatives, addressing whether and where the BRT should run in a dedicated median or curb lane or in mixed traffic, which route it should take, and which stations should be included in the Recommended Alternative. The alternatives will be evaluated according to a set of criteria that address considerations such as travel times and reliability, ridership, accessibility to jobs and other destinations, support for redevelopment, costs, and impacts to the environment and properties. MCDOT is also developing a preliminary service plan for the BRT and complementary local bus routes.

For more information about the alternatives MCDOT is studying in Phase 2, see MD 355 Alternatives.

Click here to download a PDF of the map.

 

Stay Connected with BRT

Local governments, stakeholders, advisory committees, and the public have been involved in the project since 2015, and their input will continue to be sought during this Phase 2 study. To get involved and stay informed about the project, you can:

​​Please check back for more information on upcoming events!

 

Important Documents

Open Houses

Open houses constitute opportunities for residents to stop in, learn about this project, ask questions, and offer comments to our staff. Below are the open houses (grouped by so-called "rounds") that have taken place or are about to take place. They are organized from most recent to oldest events.

3 rd Round

In January and February 2018, three open houses took place. The first was on January 22nd at Clarksburg High School, the second was on January 24th at Gaithersburg High School, and the third was on February 1st at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School. All meetings were conducted by Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT). The following materials were presented prior or during the events:

 

2 nd Round

In February 2017, two open houses took place. One was on February 7 th at Montgomery College Germantown Campus, and the other one was on February 8 th at the Executive Office Building in Rockville. They were conducted by Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), in partnership with Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT). The following materials were presented prior or during the events:

 

1 st Round

In spring of 2016, two open houses took place. One was on April 28 th at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School, and a second one was on May 3 rd 2016 at Gaithersburg High School. They were conducted by Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), in partnership with Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT). The following materials were presented prior or during the events:

Your Input is Important to Us!

We invite the public to review the information presented in this page and submit comment using the following form. Community input is vitally important to the MD 355 project and your interest and participation are greatly appreciated.

 
Last update: February 12, 2018, 5:00 pm
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