Well, sir, there’s nothin’ on earth like a genuine bona-fide electrified six-car monorail! What’d I say? … Monorail!
Unlike the pitch from cartoon huckster Lyle Lanley in Season 4’s twelfth episode of “The Simpsons,” the concept of monorail as a means of easing the rush hour traffic problems along I-270 is being taken very seriously around the state. Since that now legendary episode debuted in January of 1993, technological advancement has quietly grown as a realistic means of addressing traffic problems around the world … except here in the USA.
We Americans can throw cold water on good ideas pretty fast … Do you think good ol’ Lyle may have had something to do with that?
In the 19 days since the MacRo Report Blog publicly broke the Monorail story in tandem with a piece written by the Washington Post’s Katherine Shaver, Montgomery County developer Robert Eisinger, who has been shepherding the idea for more than a year has been overwhelmed with interest from media, state appointees and politicians.
With a bit of serious reading, it’s easy to understand why the idea of a 27-mile monorail run up and down I-270 between Frederick and Shady Grove has caught the Big MO!
On Wednesday, June 5, 2019, Maryland State Comptroller Peter Franchot broadcast a statement that in part stated:
“Consistent with [finding a] balanced approach [to the “Congestion Crisis”], I voted today [as a member of the Board of Public Works] to allow Governor Hogan’s Administration to further explore the feasibility of an innovative new idea for relieving traffic gridlock on Interstate 270 and, in later years, on the Capital Beltway – one that would be built by the private sector and not by the taxpayers …. I asked the Department to study the feasibility of monorail as yet another part of the solution to our region’s mobility challenges, and the Department has agreed to do so.”
This came one day after Eisinger and his team at the High Road Foundation met with Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete K. Rahn, who according to sources with the Washington Post, said that it “makes sense to include monorail as an option in an upcoming study of adding toll lanes to I-270 north of Interstate 370 in Gaithersburg.”
Go figure who was sharing ideas with Comptroller Franchot!
For I-270 monorail proponents, this is big … maybe even HUUUUGE!
As we noted in MacRo’s monorail story on the 18th of May, which was reprinted nearly in total in the Commentary Section of The Frederick News Post last Sunday, June 2nd, Eisinger has invested his own personal resources to study the engineering of the idea, as well as a preliminary ridership study. But now for the State Board of Public Works to include his monorail idea for further study as part of the I-495/I-270 Highway Expansion Plan, means additional funding could be available to carry out a more in depth ridership study … to answer the big question: How many of those commuters who have to deal with the “Congestion Crisis” would support Monorail?
In order to educate the citizenry of Frederick County, Eisinger is making the rounds to speak to groups and community organizations. On June 12th he will make a presentation to the noon meeting of the 200 plus member of The Rotary Club of Frederick. At a special June 20th 3:00 PM meeting, the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce will be welcoming Eisinger, and the Carroll Creek Rotary Club will introduce him to its membership at breakfast meeting on July 17th. Other requests are coming in … interested? Let me know!
Unfortunately for fans of the Simpsons, Bob Eisinger doesn’t wear a straw bowler or a red blazer, and he doesn’t even sing or dance. But fortunately, his concept is well researched, environmentally compatible and truly worthy of serious consideration as an alternative and/or supplement to the I-270 Congestion Crisis that thousands of us have to deal with on a regular basis.
Learn more through these recent media links:
- The High Road Foundation website
- High Road Monorail Video
- WTTG 5 News Clip
- Maryland Matters
- WUSA 9 News Clip
- WMAL Radio – The Larry O’Connor Show
- WDVM 25 News Clip
- Washington Business Journal
Rocky Mackintosh, President of MacRo, Ltd., a Land and Commercial Real Estate firm based in Frederick, Maryland, has been an active member of the Frederick community for over four decades. He has served as chairman of the board of Frederick Memorial Hospital and as a member of the Frederick County Charter Board from 2010 to 2012. He currently serves as chairman of the board of Frederick Mutual Insurance Company. Established in 1843, it is one of the longest enduring businesses in Frederick County.