The Maryland Department of Transportation has delayed a vote on a
plan to have a private company design, build, operate and help pay for a light-rail Purple Line
, a spokeswoman said Tuesday night.
The state’s Board of Public Works — made up of the governor, the comptroller and the state treasurer — was scheduled to vote Wednesday on the transportation agency’s plan for a public-private partnership. MDOT needs the board’s approval to solicit companies interested in a 35-year contract to design, build, operate and help finance the proposed 16-mile rail line between Montgomery and Prince George’s counties.
Erin Henson, an MDOT spokeswoman, said in an e-mail that the agency is “taking a little more time to craft the solicitation” and will instead take it to the board Nov. 6.
The proposed public-private partnership would be one of the most far-reaching of any U.S. transit project because it would rely heavily on private financing.
State transportation officials say they anticipate a team of companies would contribute $500 million to $900 million toward a Purple Line’s $2.2 billion costs. The state would reimburse the private team for construction costs over five years and then pay the company to operate and maintain the line for 30 years.