Plans for Capital Crescent Trail, Purple Line become more expensive

Preserving the Capital Crescent Trail as the Purple Line is build along the trail’s route could cost millions of dollars, according to new estimates by Maryland authorities.

The trail uses a tunnel that would be needed for the expansion of the Purple Line, the nearly $2 billion dollar rail project that would extend service between Bethesda and New Carrollton.

Maryland Transit Administration engineers have devised an elaborate plan to squeeze both the trail and train lines through a tunnel underneath Wisconsin Avenue.

It would maintain use of the tunnel for the light rail and keep bikers from crossing busy Wisconsin Avenue. They proposed building a 1100-foot tube above the rail lines.

“It’s elaborate but an important part of the community,” said MTA project manager Michael Madden.

The elevated tube alone would cost $43 million.