Purple Line construction green lighted to begin this week

What's next for people who own property along the future Purple Line -- now that construction is underway?

HYATTSVILLE, MD (WUSA9) - Bethesda, Silver Spring and Hyattsville, get ready! You could see official Purple Line construction as early as Tuesday.

A Maryland Department of Transportation spokesperson told WUSA9 construction on the Purple Line's Bethesda Station, the Silver Spring tunnel and the Purple Line Operation Center in Hyattsville start this week.

State and federal grabbed their shovels in Hyattsville Monday for the official Purple Line groundbreaking.

The ceremonial dirt dig gave the green light to the 16.2 mile light rail line that will connect Bethesda to New Carrollton with 19 stations in between. There's 21 stations planned in all.



"I love the idea that I'd be able to hop on the Purple Line right up the street, right up Dale Dr. and be in Bethesda in 10 minutes. That's really appealing!" said Jen Kidwell who is actually going to lose some of her front yard to construction.

"We bought the house full well knowing that it very likely would be constructed along Wayne Avenue. We generally believe that public transportation makes communities a lot stronger," she added.

While Dario Orellana said he's devastated.

"So everybody's going to lose their job," he told us.

Orellana said he just opened a notice that gives him a little over 30 days to be out of his Silver Spring restaurant location, which is now being taken over for the Purple Line through eminent domain.

"I've been here about 18 years, so this is everything to me," he said.

PREVIOUS: New Purple Line design called 'Trump Wall'

Multiple groups, including the Town of Chevy Chase, reportedly sued to try and stop the line. It's now expected to be up and running by Spring 2022. Technically, the legal fight is still going through the court system, but a recent decision allowed the U.S. Department of Transportation to move forward.

Monday, it was announced a total of $900 million in federal funds will be appropriated for what is being referred to as one of the largest private-public partnerships.

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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