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Living the Transit Lifestyle

December 29, 2015
This has been a year of new beginnings for the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA). With our newly energized focus on safe, efficient and reliable transit across Maryland with world-class customer service as the foundation of major improvements on the way, the MTA is poised to deliver a virtually brand new transit system to our customers over the next 18 months. The introduction of #BaltimoreLink will transform transit throughout the Baltimore  region. The comprehensive draft plan includes redesigning the entire local and express bus systems throughout Baltimore and adding 12 new high-... more
December 16, 2015
Guy Henderson         It’s not every day that a television show gets to celebrate its 200th episode.  The Maryland Transit Administration’s Commuter Connections began life as a television show in 1999 with the name In Touch With the MTA. The program began airing on the Baltimore City Government Channel (Comcast Channel 25), and has since expanded to station affiliates throughout Central Maryland and the Eastern Shore. Sharing important information on transit projects and initiatives as well as promoting public transit throughout the Baltimore-Washington region, Commuter Connections now... more
December 10, 2015
Jon Berle       The current round of public workshops being offered to introduce the new #BaltimoreLink program are part of a long tradition at MTA of engaging our customers and gathering their feedback before embarking on a significant addition to or change in service. MTA has always valued our customers’ opinions, and their suggestions are taken seriously and incorporated into final plans whenever possible and practical. That’s the way it was 20 years ago when MTA proposed introducing the kind of railcar our riders hadn’t seen in Maryland before – a “new” bi-level rail car that offered... more
December 3, 2015
Guy Henderson         In addition to being one of the highest yielding fossil hunting areas in the nation, Southern Maryland has earned the distinction of being the state’s fastest growing region. The decision made over two decades ago to consolidate defense activities at Patuxent River Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division by the federal Base Realignment and Closure Commission is still shaping burgeoning growth in Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s counties today, and will continue to do so for years to come.   Economic opportunity within the counties is an important factor in their... more
November 24, 2015
The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is traditionally the busiest day for traffic of the entire year. In order to accommodate our riders who are fortunate enough to be able to take off early from work on Wednesday (as well as a host of other considerations) here’s a complete list of MTA service modifications to expect over the next few days. All of us at the Maryland Transit Administration wish you a safe and happy holiday.  Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 26 Local Bus: Sunday/Holiday Schedule Metro Subway: Sunday/Holiday Schedule Light Rail: Sunday/Holiday Schedule MARC Train: No Service... more
November 18, 2015
Guy HendersonWith about 800 buses traveling through downtown Baltimore every weekday, the scene above is typical of what happens when too many buses are all routed in the same direction, with a system based on getting riders to where the primary job center was 50 years ago - downtown.The draft transit improvement plan known as #BaltimoreLink was designed to connect Baltimore residents to today's jobs. The plan was developed at least partially to reflect today’s reality that many jobs have moved to the suburbs.With each new public workshop to help shape a final BaltimoreLink system that works... more
November 13, 2015
Baltimore's Summer Cars offered some respite from the heat in the days before air conditioning was widespread  Jon BerleOpen top buses, usually but not exclusively double-decker buses, were known as Summer Cars when MTA’s predecessor, the Baltimore Transit Company (BTC), operated them here in the 1920s. Summer Cars were first introduced in Baltimore on July 1, 1922 on the “A” Line, and quickly became popular during the summer months. Riders in Chicago enjoyed "Summer Cars" too, as did the residents of many other American cities in the 1920s.  The open-topped BTC Summer Cars... more
November 6, 2015
Friends for life Walter Meyers (L) with his buddy Edgar Hatter. (See "Small World" below.) This photo was sent to BTC early in 1946 by Mr. Hatter.   Jon BerlePresident Woodrow Wilson started the first Veterans Day (then called Armistice Day) on November 11, 1919 afterWorld War I ended. The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA), and its predecessors Baltimore Transit Company (BTC) and United Railways and Electric (UR&E) all share a common history not only of providing public transportation for the citizens of Baltimore, but also of having to lose manpower during wartime. In honor of... more
November 3, 2015
Guy Henderson   For Jimmy Rouse, artist, community activist, former owner of Louie’s Bookstore Cafe and son of renowned developer James Rouse, Governor Hogan’s plan to transform transit in Baltimore through the newBaltimoreLink plan will offer a welcome change to the local transit scene.   He has a personal interest in seeing that change happen.   According to Rouse, “When I owned the restaurant, we had a rule that no employee could be more than 15 minutes late more than three times. I had to fire good, hard-working people simply because they couldn’t rely on the transportation system to get... more
October 29, 2015
Jon BerleWhile Americans know Halloween as a time of spooky antics and costumes, it originated as a religious festival honoring the deceased. So this week seemed like the perfect time to share what we know about Delores, Baltimore’s first funeral rail car that wasn't horse-drawn.Delores was built in 1897 by the La Clede Car Company for the Baltimore and Northern Electric Railway. The name Delores means "sorrows" and is derived from the Spanish title for the Virgin Mary María de los Dolores, or Mary of Sorrows.Before Delores started service with United Railways and Electric (UR&E) on... more