MTA will purchase property to make way for Purple Line

(WJLA) - Wise Lampkin has lived in this house off Riverdale Road for decades. His home is one of more than 600 properties that the Maryland Transit Administration is looking to acquire in order to build the proposed 16-mile Purple Line.

“Neighbors don’t bother me, I don’t bother them, and what’s what I like…I really don’t want to move out of this area,” he said. [But] they’re going to take the place and there’s nothing I can do about it – that’s the way I look at it. Money will always talk.”

The Purple Line would run between Bethesda and New Carrollton to connect the Metro, Amtrak, and MARC commuter rail stations. In the next couple of weeks, the state plans on making their first purchase offers to those who are being relocated. One of those properties includes this strip mall in Silver Spring, where Austin Lee and his parents own a liquor store.

“We are here every day trying to work this business – all the owners put in countless hours to make it profitable and the economy right now is not all that great, unemployment is high, and we’re doing what we can to survive,” said Lee.

Lee says they’re just taking it day-by-day until the state makes an offer. But in the meantime, he worries about how the move will affect his bottom line:

“We work hard, hopefully there’s a better future out there, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed…”