Against the ICC
Against the ICC
The intercounty connector (ICC) is an example of the lack of leadership in Maryland in planning for the future, protecting the quality of life and creating livable communities.
The ICC fails a cost-benefit analysis, and the taxpayers lose. The ICC price tag is up to almost $3 billion, not including costs to the environment, recreation, communities and health. For benefits, the ICC will not reduce traffic on the Beltway or on many local roads and intersections. And it does not address the root cause of congestion, our driving and land-use patterns. In fact, it will ultimately cause a significant increase in traffic by spawning the kind of sprawling, auto-dependent development that got us into this traffic mess.
In the long run, the best approach to relieving congestion is to convert the ICC route to parkland with an east-west bike route, and work to actually solve rather than continue congestion. But getting off the road-building treadmill would take vision and leadership, something that seems in short supply in Maryland today.
Montgomery County prides itself on being a national leader in providing services to residents. With the building of the ICC, it appears that once again the county could have an opportunity to win awards for the county executive's office.
If the southern route of the ICC is ever built, the county will have to come up with another name for the new communities it will create. The area of the county that will be bounded on the north by the ICC, on the east by Interstate 95, on the south by the Beltway and on the west by Interstate 270 will need a new name. People living within this huge area will have the unique distinction of living in one of the largest gated communities in the country. Miles of concrete, asphalt and sound barriers will surround them. How about calling it the Inside Concrete Community?
The ICC is a dinosaur project that should've been allowed to become extinct. The $1 billion to $3 billion cost of this monster could be better spent on widening existing east-west roads, improving intersections and dramatically expanding the Ride On bus system.
Stephen G. Gunnulfsen
The ICC is an abomination that will have permanent, devastating impacts on the ecosystem and quality of life in central Montgomery County.
The fact is, the ICC will cut a huge swath through the last mature contiguous forests and sensitive ecosystems in central Montgomery County.