Maryland Governor Literally Erases Baltimore from State Map
... while canceling the city's desperately needed new light-rail line.
On Thursday, Larry Hogan, a no-name Republican who managed to slip into blue-state Maryland's highest office all but by accident, announced the abrupt cancellation of Baltimore's decades-in-the-making east-west rail corridor project, the Red Line.
It was hard to see it as anything other than "fuck you" to Baltimore, a nice follow-up to the recent denial of $11.6 million for the city's education budget. Just like that the Red Line was off the table, leaving the city with its ever-suffering web of transit half-assery.
Hogan left plans for another rail line, this one traversing what was ranked by Forbes as the number eight richest county in the country, largely intact.
As for the hundreds of millions that might have gone to the Red Line, Hogan tweeted this map describing all of the many highway projects that can look forward to being showered in state cash. Stare at it a minute, and then look at a state map of Maryland.
Baltimore is missing. Gone. It's not even a fuck you or disownment. It's slicing the city clean off into the Chesapeake Bay.
The tweet was eventually deleted.
From a Baltimore Sun editorial:
It would be one thing to deny Baltimore if this was a city with an abundance of transit options. It isn't, it's a place of half-built half-measures. Or perhaps a city so prosperous that it doesn't require public investment? It certainly isn't that either. Or maybe it would make more sense if Baltimore was not still reeling from the aftermath of the Freddie Gray unrest and the growing awareness of the myriad hardships endured in what are this state's most concentrated pockets of poverty: the near-abandoned city neighborhoods where unemployment and drug addiction rates are high but opportunities to overcome these handicaps are tragically rare.
If the point was to make Baltimore an even harder city to thrive in, there are few other single actions that could have done a better job than ditching the Red Line.