Community Liaison Council Meeting Minutes — January 15, 2015

January 15, 2015; 4:00 to 5:30 PM
Natcher Building, Conference Room D
National Institutes of Health

MD 355 Crossing Project Update — Tim Cupples, Montgomery County Department of Transportation

Sharon Robinson opened the CLC meeting at 4:07 p.m. in the absence of John Burklow, Tara Mowery and Ginny Miller. Mr. Cupples provided an update on the MD 355 BRAC Crossing Project, which aims to

  • Enhance access to mass transit
  • Improve the mobility and safety of pedestrians and bicyclists crossing 355 and
  • Improve traffic operations at nearby intersections.

Mr. Neuberg reminded CLC members that the county has assumed the responsibility for the construction of this state project, which will include a MD 355 underpass as well as improvements at the Jones Bridge Road intersection. The effort is 100 percent funded with federal money.

The project will feature a tunnel under MD 355 with escalators, stairs and high-speed elevators on each end so pedestrians can cross from the west side of the street to the east side and vice versa. A new entrance to the Medical Center Metro Station will encourage people to use mass transit to get to the Walter Reed Naval Medical Center. Commuters will be able to access Metro at the mezzanine level from the east side of MD 355. Adding a new staircase and second elevator from the mezzanine level to the platform level within the station will accommodate increased Metro ridership.

To coordinate the construction and manage the flow of traffic through the MD 355 corridor, the county will hire a single contractor to do all the work. The county will select a firm by summer 2015. During peak morning hours, three lanes of traffic will be open southbound. Three lanes northbound will be available in the evenings. The project will maintain an ADA-accessible path through the site at all times during construction. Regarding events that typically take place in the area during the year, Mr. Neuberg asked Mr. Schools to provide a calendar so the county will be aware of any issues. Mr. Neuberg added that construction workers cannot use NIH property for materials storage.  

The county has developed preliminary plans and performance criteria, spelling out such mandatory concerns as stakeholder commitments and federal environmental guidelines. The prospective construction entities will compete on price, completion time and other factors. Two firms remain on the short list, down from a previous pool of six or seven that expressed interest. Construction will most likely begin sometime during the summer or early fall after the county gives one of these firms a notice to proceed. The process will begin with utility relocation, followed by shaft excavation. Fall 2018 is the estimated completion date.

Round Robin

Sharon Robinson announced that CLC members will no longer be able to receive NIH extended badges. Once these extended badges expire, each member will have to enter the campus through Gateway Center to receive a visitor’s badge.


The meeting adjourned at 5:15 p.m.


CLC Members
Marian Bradford, Camelot Mews
Margaret Dittemore, Huntington Terrace
Ellen Larson, Sonoma Citizens Association
Darrell Lemke, Parkview
Marilyn Mazuzan, Oakmont
Deborah Michaels, Glenbrook Village
Ralph Schofer, Maplewood
Jennette Wade, Whitehall  

NIH Staff
Phil Neuberg
Sharon Robinson, OCL
Randy Schools

Tim Cupples, Montgomery County

Laura Jackson, Audio Associates

This page last reviewed on March 9, 2017