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BAY CROSSING STUDY TIER 1 FINAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT / RECORD OF DECISION APPROVED

BAY CROSSING STUDY TIER 1 FINAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT / RECORD OF DECISION APPROVED

Bay Crossing Study Tier 1 NEPA Concludes

FHWA Officially Approves Corridor 7, the Corridor Containing the Bay Bridge,

as the Selected Corridor Alternative

 

BALTIMORE, MD (April 21, 2022) – The combined Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) for the Chesapeake Bay Crossing Study: Tier 1 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) has been published and is available for review at baycrossingstudy.com and starting April 22, at several local libraries. The combined FEIS/ROD has been prepared pursuant to NEPA and has been approved by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA).  The FHWA identified Corridor 7, the corridor containing the Bay Bridge, as the Selected Corridor Alternative. The approval of the FEIS/ROD marks completion of the Tier 1 NEPA Study.

The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) and FHWA followed a well-established tiered NEPA process that provides a systematic approach for advancing potential transportation improvements. The federal NEPA process applies to all projects potentially receiving federal funding or approval.

The Bay Crossing Study Tier 1 NEPA evaluated a range of alternatives, including a no-build alternative, four modal and operational alternatives, and 14 corridor alternatives, to provide expanded traffic capacity and additional access across the Chesapeake Bay to improve mobility, travel reliability and safety at the existing Bay Bridge, while considering financial viability and environmental responsibility.

The combined FEIS/ROD focuses on updates to the February 2021 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) that was available for review and comment from February 23 through May 17, 2021. The DEIS content and analysis remain valid except where updated information is noted in the FEIS. The FEIS provides summaries of the more than 850 agency and public comments received and responds to substantive comments.

The FEIS also details the rationale and information supporting the selection of Corridor 7 as the Preferred Corridor Alternative (PCA). Through an alternative screening process derived from the Study’s purpose and need, including an extensive agency and public review and comment process, the combined FEIS/ROD concluded that the corridor containing the existing Bay Bridge – Corridor 7 – would have the most positive impact on reducing traffic at the Bay Bridge when compared to other alternatives and would improve access and mobility in this essential transportation corridor. The ROD officially documents Corridor 7 as the Selected Corridor Alternative.

Any next steps would require additional environmental review through a Tier 2 NEPA Study. A Tier 2 NEPA Study would identify specific alignment alternatives within the two-mile-wide Selected Corridor Alternative identified during Tier 1.

The following sections are included in the Bay Crossing Study Tier 1 FEIS/ROD:

  • Chapter 1 Introduction – Provides background information on the Bay Crossing Study, Purpose and Need, DEIS Activities, and the PCA;
  • Chapter 2 Errata Table of Changes – Lists specific edits and corrections to the DEIS;
  • Chapter 3 Supplementary Analysis and Discussion – Provides supplementary information on topics including Traffic, Climate Change and Sea Level Rise, Environmental Justice, and Section 106 of the U.S. Department of Transportation Act of 1966;
  • Chapter 4 Summary of Public Involvement and Public Comments – Summarizes the public outreach activities and comments received on the DEIS;
  • Chapter 5 Summary of Agency Coordination and Comments – Provides an overview of the agency coordination activities since the release of the DEIS and comments received from federal, state, and local agencies on the DEIS;
  • Chapter 6 Preferred Corridor Alternative – Provides discussion of the rationale for identifying Corridor 7 as the PCA, including consideration of agency and public comments on the DEIS;
  • Chapter 7 Record of Decision – Finalizes the selection of Corridor 7 as the Selected Corridor Alternative, with discussion of commitments and next steps; and
  • Appendices – Includes all comments received during the DEIS comment period, with summaries and responses categorized by topics.

To view the combined FEIS/ROD document in person, please visit one of these locations in the study area:

  • Broadneck Library

1275 Green Holly Dr., Annapolis, MD

410-222-1905

 

  • Kent Island Library

200 Library Cir., Stevensville, MD

410-643-8161

  • Centreville Library

121 S Commerce St., Centreville, MD

410-758-0890

 

  • Michael E. Busch Annapolis Library

1410 West St., Annapolis, MD

410-222-1750

  • Chestertown Main Library

408 High St., Chestertown, MD

410-778-3636

 

  • Mountain Road Library

4730 Mountain Rd., Pasadena, MD

410-222-6699

 

  • Crofton Library

1681 Riedel Rd., Crofton, MD

410-222-7915

 

  • Severna Park Library

45 W McKinsey Rd., Severna Park, MD

410-222-6290

 

  • Deale Library

5940 Deale Churchton Rd., Deale, MD

410-222-1925

 

  • St. Michaels Library

106 Fremont St., St. Michaels, MD

410-745-5877

 

  • Easton Main Library

100 W Dover St., Easton, MD

410-822-1626

 

  • Twin Beaches Library

3819 Harbor Rd., Chesapeake Beach, MD

410-257-2411

  • Edgewater Library

25 Stepneys Ln., Edgewater, MD

410-222-1538                                                  

 

 

 

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