University of Maryland officials have dropped their long-held opposition to running Purple Line light rail trains through the heart of the College Park campus, giving a major boost to the project as Maryland transit officials seek federal funding for its construction.
The university has fought the Maryland Transit Administration’s plan to run trains along Campus Drive since at least 2007. University leaders have said trains would ruin the campus’s pedestrian-friendly feel, endanger walkers and cyclists, and create electromagnetic interference for sensitive lab equipment. The university had proposed a tunnel or other setups farther from the campus core.
Frank Brewer, the university’s vice president for administrative affairs, said Wednesday that the MTA had addressed those concerns.
“We wanted to make sure the university is not in MTA’s way in any way, shape or form to make the Purple Line happen,” Brewer said. “We’ve always wanted the Purple Line to come across campus. It was just a question of where.”