Multiple foundations and the Maryland State Highway Administration, Maryland Department of Transportation
There is broad agreement that Maryland is subject to market, demographic, political, and policy forces that will encourage and allow it to grow. That growth of people, jobs, and buildings has economic benefits for current and future residents and businesses. But it also has effects, many of which are negative, on environmental quality, mobility, cost of living, and many other aspects of quality of life in the state of Maryland.
Many of the problems of growth and development are regional in nature, but most of the capacity to deal with the problem is local. Metropolitan Planning Organizations (e.g., the Baltimore Metropolitan Council) can take a regional view, but their focus is transportation; they lack implementing and enforcement authority in the area of land development, economic development, and environmental quality; and they cover only a small percentage of Maryland’s land area.
The state increasingly confronts issues and decisions of statewide significance: traffic congestion in the Baltimore-Washington corridor, rapid development in Southern Maryland and the Eastern Shore, and economic revitalization in Western Maryland. What would happen if further BRAC decisions continued to distribute jobs to the far corners of the state, if a second bridge connected Maryland’s Eastern and Western Shores, or if commuter rail were connected and extensive between the Baltimore and Washington metropolitan areas? The Maryland Scenario Project will help answer those questions and many others of statewide significance.