Most people call it "the B-W Parkway," but the main passenger-car road leading from Baltimore to Washington may soon get a new name: the Gladys Noon Spellman Parkway.

Spellman's successor in Congress, Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), introduced legislation yesterday that would name the federally owned road for the four-term lawmaker he replaced after a special election early this year. The legislation has 23 cosponsors, including the entire Maryland delegation and some others whose political views are far to the right of Spellman's liberalism.

Spellman was struck down with a cardiac arrest last Oct. 31, and remains in a semicomatose condition in a nursing home. Her House seat was declared vacant, making the special election necessary.

Hoyer noted that Spellman, early in her House career, shepherded a $5.7 million appropriation for resurfacing the parkway through Congress. The road, he said, is "the lifeline of the 5th Congressional District."

Hoyer, a former Maryland state H senator and product of a Prince George's political organization some call a "machine," has a framed picture on his office wall done a few years ago by his daughter Susan. Below a childish caricature of Hoyer, it bears this very forthright legend:

"My father works day and night. He has many machines. He is a Senator."