Angela D. Alsobrooks on Wednesday aimed a bullet(train) directly at the heart of her leading opponent in the Democratic primary for Prince George’s County executive, Donna F. Edwards. But Edwards appeared to be ready for the attack and may have even worn the political equivalent of bullet-proof armor.
Alsobrooks, the state’s attorney, joined several elected officials and community activists in Greenbelt to express their opposition to Maglev, the proposed high-speed train that would link Washington, D.C., to Baltimore – and eventually to New York City – carrying passengers at speeds of up to 300 miles per hour. If built, the train could get from D.C. to Baltimore in 15 minutes and from Baltimore to New York in 45 minutes.
The news conference took place at a residential development where, city officials maintain, a contractor connected to the project recently conducted soil testing without getting approval from the city, county or homeowners association. The city government issued a stop-work order.
Critics said the high-speed rail project, the subject of an ongoing environmental review that the Maryland Department of Transportation is conducting for the federal government, would create maximum disruption in Prince George’s County with few tangible benefits. The train, they argued, would threaten residential neighborhoods, schools, religious institutions, businesses, natural resources and historic cemeteries to serve “elites” who would blow through the county without ever stopping.
The two proposed alignments would run roughly along either side of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway — and one would tunnel directly under Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Greenbelt.
Alsobrooks described the proposal as “outright disrespect to Prince George’s County” and “a discourteous project.”