Sen. Ed Kasemeyer (D-Howard/Baltimore) said Thursday night he was more than 99 percent sure that a freight depot would not be built in Elkridge.
Speaking at the Greater Elkridge Community Association meeting, Kasemeyer told approximately 20 citizens that he had a “good source” who told him that CSX and the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) would look somewhere other than Hanover and Race roads to construct a train-truck transfer station.
He said he was "99.9 percent [certain] that it will not go here," referring to the rail project, which is called an.
Councilwoman Courtney Watson (D-Elkridge/Ellicott City) said she wasn’t as sure as Kasemeyer about the intermodal project going elsewhere, but she said she was hopeful.
“I hope he’s right. I just want to say, let’s wait and see what CSX has to say in the next few weeks but I do hope he’s right,” said Watson. “Keep your fingers crossed.”
For more than five years, CSX has had designs on property at Hanover and Race roads for its intermodal facility, according to landowners in the area.
In 2010, . In 2011, it to evaluate four sites, including land on Hanover at Race roads, for the intermodal facility, which it needs to accommodate the influx of freight from the Panama Canal.
The intermodal facility would allow for trains to be stacked, one on top of another, and for trains to swap cargo with trucks. Residents have protested, stating they are concerned about their , and traffic generated by the hundreds of trucks that would travel to the facility each day.
The other candidate sites are on Montevideo Road, Brock Bridge Road and at Beltsville Agricultural Research Center.
Kasemeyer and Maryland State Del. James Malone (D-Baltimore/Howard) worked to include a clause in the state's FY 2013 budget stipulating that MDOT would have to evaluate other sites for the project and submit a report with its findings by October 2012 before receiving $500,000 of its budget.
The head of the Greater Elkridge Community Association said residents will continue to oppose the project.
"We don't stop until tracks are laid in Baltimore," said Howard Johnson, president of the Greater Elkridge Community Association, at the conclusion of the May 24 meeting. "Until that happens, we're still on the aggressive. We can't back down."