A previous message points to the State Highway Administration (SHA) statement on their desire to change the end of ICC Phase 1 from Georgia Avenue to Norbeck Road. This message provides some additional details. The information comes from a conversation with Odessa Phillips, community liaison for the ICC project phase 1.
Previously, Phase 1 construction of the ICC (from I-370 to Georgia Avenue) was to end at a cloverleaf interchange on Georgia Avenue. This would connect the 6 lane toll road ICC to the 6 lane divided state highway Georgia Avenue north of Norbeck Road (route 28). Last fall, SHA proposed building a “spur road” to connect eastbound traffic from the ICC onto Norbeck Road to assist with the failing intersection at Georgia and Norbeck.
In a change proposed by Greater Olney Civic Association Treasurer Roy Peck, SHA is now planning to have phase 1 of the ICC continuing through the cloverleaf and terminating at a temporary exit directly onto Norbeck Road. This exit will bring ICC traffic directly onto Norbeck Road on existing ICC right-of-way but outside the expected ICC path. While specifics are unavailable, the description from SHA indicated the ICC will now terminate between the entrance to the Longmeade Crossing neighborhood and Baileys Land. An additional traffic light will be added at this exit, and an additional lane will be added to provide more merging space for traffic. It is unknown how this light will be timed with the existing light on Wintergate Drive.
Despite claims that the ICC has an extensive community outreach mission, SHA conceeded that they did not send a mailing to residents of the Norbeck area of the county soliciting them for input on the proposed change. Additionally, no sign was placed on the right-of-way indicating a public meeting or hearing as is typical for similar zoning changes. SHA also indicated that our state representatives were briefed on the change.
Please note that while the Greater Olney Civic Association collaborated with the state on this change, they are clearly on record as being opposed to the ICC and favor the ICC being closed until all phases are complete.