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Maryland Coalition for Responsible Trans

Our name is Maryland Coalition for Responsible Transit (MCRT). We evaluate transit projects for social equity, environmental justice, economic viability, and community accessibility.  We believe that the Baltimore Washington (BW) SCMaglev must be stopped in order to implement future transit projects that meet our criteria of a much lower price and much less risk and impact to communities.  Thus, we support the no-build option and are working to stop this project through the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process, specifically by building public capacity to respond to the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).

We can be reached at

Greetings, everyone, including all elected officials and your staff!

We are the Maryland Coalition for Responsible Transit (MCRT). Our mission is to evaluate transit projects for social equity, environmental justice, economic viability, environmental impact, and community accessibility. We have closely followed the proposed Baltimore-Washington Superconducting Magnetic Levitation (SCMaglev) transportation project for several years. We wrote many white papers and an extensive set of comments in response to the project’s 2021 Draft Environmental Impact Statement.  All of these can be found here on this website under the SCMaglev Opposition Tab (at the top right of this page).  We have worked with government agencies, other organizations, elected officials, and communities to fully understand and address the extensive impacts this project would have in Maryland.

MCRT offers background and detailed resources on this proposed high-speed train that would run from Mount Vernon Square in Washington, D.C., both tunneling under and emerging above ground along the Baltimore-Washington Parkway in Prince George’s and Anne Arundel counties, to Cherry Hill, on the southern tip of Baltimore City. Residents will be impacted by this project.  Their elected officials may well want to be prepared to answer questions from their constituents on their position(s) on this approximately $16 billion transportation proposal.

We have compiled extensive information on the SCMaglev project, available on this website ( These resources will be helpful for anyone interested in background on this project, including elected officials and their staff. For questions about our research or to arrange an

in-depth briefing or discussion, please send a request to

Also note, Information flyers in English and Spanish are available at links on this website.

- - - - - SCMaglev Status - - - - -

The SCMaglev project is ALIVE and the Baltimore-Washington Rapid Rail is working hard

to see the project is approved.

As of​ February 23, 2024:

  • SCMAGLEV Water Quality Certification (WQC) Review - Faced with the MDE's intention to deny their application, BWRR withdraws its application for Tier II Water Quality Certification for the SCMaglev ProjectTo view MCRT's press release, click here.

  • FRA SCMaglev DEIS Review.  The Federal Railroad Administration review of the SCMaglev Draft Environmental Impact Study was paused on August 26, 2021, and is still on pause.  To see the FRA's Permitting Dashboard for the SCMaglev Project, click on:


Affiliate Your Organization with MCRT to Help Stop the SCMaglev


Are you a Maryland resident alarmed by SCMaglev's hyped promises, unproven technology, and destruction of our communities and environment?

We are eager to share what we have learned and expand our alliances with neighborhood associations, nature advocacy groups, and other organizations. If you are in a position to write on behalf of your organization, please visit our Affiliate Intake Form.


June 21, 2024 - MCRT's letter to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) subject: Draft Supplemental Environmental Assessment for Traffic and Utilities Mitigation for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing – Currency Production Facility. MCRT provides opposition comments on the "Draft Supplemental Environmental Assessment (EA) for traffic, utilities, and construction for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing’s (BEP) Currency Production Facility (CPF). The relocation and construction of the CPF causes severe impacts to the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center
(BARC), the watersheds, and communities, and raises several issues about how the infrastructure around the site is designed." To read the MCRT letter, click here.

June 12, 2024 - MCRT's letter to the FRA and MTA subject: Federal Railroad Administration and Maryland Department of Transportation Actions Regarding the Current “Pause” on the Superconducting Magnetic Levitation Train Project. While still on "pause" as of August 2021, the FRA and MTA, through AECOM, an environmental consultant, are beginning to reach out to agencies potentially affected by the proposed paths of the SCMaglev train. To read the MCRT letter and our requests for information and updates, click here.

May 15, 2024 - Among the many concerns MCRT discussed in our comments on the SCMaglev DEIS, as submitted to the FRA, was the potential impact and contamination of the Arundel Acquifier from the tunneling BWRR is proposing across nearly all of Anne Arundel County. This aquifer is where many Anne Arundel County residents and businesses get their drinking water. Well, it's no longer "hypothetical," it's happened in Japan. Water in wells and reservoirs has plummeted to alarming low levels in an area near tunnel construction work for the SCMaglev as reported by The Asahi Shimbun.  In their article Groundwater drying up in Gifu near work for maglev tunnel, "The groundwater in wells used for bathing, washing clothes and other daily chores began to gradually decrease at homes along an old road surrounded by rice paddies and forests, they [residents] said." "Although JR Tokai [JR Central] has not confirmed a causal relationship between its excavation work for the tunnel and the lower water levels, it has accepted responsibility. Since no other construction work is being done, we believe that the (drop in water levels) is due to the maglev construction work, a representative of the company said. During the May 13 briefing, JR Tokai said it would cover the costs of switching the Okute community’s water supply from groundwater to a different source. If BWRR's tunneling across Anne Arundel County damages the Arundel Aquifer, do you think BWRR will accept responsibility, or will all residents and businesses affected, along with Anne Arundel County and the state of Maryland, have to step in to deal with the damage all at the taxpayers' expense? To read the full article, click here.

April 25, 2024 - Chuo Shinkansen completion delayed until 2034. From the Railway Gazette International. "JAPAN: Central Japan Railway announced at the end of March that it no longer expects to start operating high speed superconducting maglev services over the Chuo Shinkansen between Tokyo and Nagoya in 2027." To read the full article, click here.

April 23, 2024 - Not so fast: Maryland high-speed train project hits skids. From Bay Journal's Jeremy Cox. The article is a good read, laying out proponents' and opponents' positions and concerns. Note that MCRT members Kyle Hart, Rhonda Kranz, and Dan Woomer are cited in the article. To read the full article, click here.

April 20, 2024 - MCRT 2023 Annual Report is posted. To review or download a copy of the report, click here.

April 14, 2024 - ​DC to Baltimore in Less Than 30 Minutes by Train After $6 Billion Tunnel Construction is Completed.  Written by MCS Staff.  An AECOM-led joint venture with Jacobs has been selected by Amtrak to serve as a delivery partner for the $6 billion Frederick Douglass Tunnel Program that will upgrade a ten-mile section of the Northeast Corridor (NEC), America’s busiest passenger rail line.  After the program is complete, MARC and Amtrak trains could travel between Baltimore and Washington in under 30 minutes when the project is completed, which is currently scheduled for 2035. To read the full article, click here.


March 29, 2024 - ​Japan rail operator gives up plan to launch maglev train in 2027. From NIKKEI Asia. Central Japan Railway said Friday it has given up its plan to launch a new high-speed maglev train between Tokyo and Nagoya in 2027, amid long-running environmental disputes. To read the full article, click here.  Also noted is the June 2021 reelection of Heita Kawakatsu who is not supporting the building of the SCMaglev. "I have been entrusted to protect the waters of the Southern Alps, protect the environment," Kawakatsu said in his victory speech. "I will work hard to find a path to a solution." To read the full article, click here.

March 26, 2024 - ​Winter-Spring 2024 MCRT Newsletter published. Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Legislators! - - No Maryland Appropriations for the
SCMaglev? - - Bureau of Engraving and Printing Currency Production Facility Update - - Amtrak Adds More Service to Meet Growing Customer Demand - - BWRR Withdraws Application to the MDE for Tier II WQC for the SCMaglev Train Project - - Blatant Subterfuge. To read this e
dition click here.

March 8, 2024 (updated) - Lawmakers may derail dreams of high-speed transit. Capital News Service. Lydia Hurley reporting from Annapolis. To read Ms. Hurley's updated article, click here. The article states: "Maryland’s leg of the trip would allow passengers to travel between Washington DC and Baltimore in just fifteen minutes, as opposed to the hour it currently takes." The test of the MARC Express from Penn Station Baltimore to Union Station Washington, D.C. with a stop at the BWI Rail station, took 30 minutes. The test made use of existing equipment, tracks, and control systems. SCMaglev reported ticket cost estimates run between $25 to $80. MARC ticket cost $10. So how many people are going to incur the far higher cost to commute between Baltimore and D.C. to save 15 minutes per trip? Also consider, the SCMaglev concept and design were first developed in 1960. That was 60+ years ago. If this technology is so great, why do we see very little of it around the world?

We invite you to read our research to find out more about the enormous financial and environmental hazards related to this project, both above and below ground. Also, refer to our testimony supporting Sen. Alonzo Washington's and Del. Nicole Wiliams' cross-filed bills referred to in this article (see below).

February 24, 2024 - A Victory for Clean Water. From the University of Maryland Francis Kinng Carey School of Law. During the summer of 2023, MCRT asked the law clinic to assist its pro bono attorney in drafting comments evaluating BWRR’s water quality certification request.  Although it was summer break, Hannah Klaus a member of the Fall ELC agreed to provide legal research and analysis to the lead attorney. However, later in the summer that attorney withdrew, and Hannah became the de facto lead counsel, a tall order for someone who had never evaluated a water quality certification before!  And what a successful job she did! To read the full article, click here.

February 22, 2024 (updated) - MCRT testified at the 2024 Senate and House hearings to support the cross-filed bills—State Finance – Prohibited Appropriations – Magnetic Levitation - Transportation System (SB0079 & HB0170). These bills seek to codify that no Maryland appropriations for the SCMaglev train project can be allocated, “providing that the prohibition does not apply to certain expenditures for salaries.” The MCRT successfully undertook extensive campaigns to educate residents about these bills, encouraging them and providing information about how to testify or submit written comments or both in support of this legislation.

The hearing for SB0079 (to read the Senate Bill click here), sponsored by Senator Alonzo Washington, took place on January 17, click here to watch a recording of the hearing go to time stamp 3:24:00 (3 hours, 24 minutes, 00 seconds into the video recording). MCRT board member Susan McCutchen testified on behalf of the nonprofit and board member Kathy Bartolomeo spoke as an individual by Zoom.

The hearing for sponsored HB170 (to read the House Bill click here), sponsored by Delegate Nicole Williams, took place on February 22, click here to watch a recording of the hearing go to time stamp 1:34:25 (1 hour, 34 minutes, 24 seconds into the video recording). MCRT board member Dan Woomer and Greenbelt Mayor Emmett Jordan testified in support of the bill in person on a panel with Delegate Williams. MCRT board president Rhonda Kranz and member Susan McCutchen testified by Zoom.


February 20, 2024 - Posted on the MCRT website, MCRT's submission to the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) on BWRR's Water Quality Certification (WCQ) application, click here and MCRT's submission to the MDE on BWRR's WCQ Supplemental materials, click here.

February 7, 2024 - Faced with the MDE's intention to deny their application, BWRR withdraws its application for Tier II Water Quality Certification for the SCMaglev ProjectTo view MCRT's press release, click here.

January 16, 2024 – MCRT 2024 Board and Officers. Rhonda Kranz – President; Pat Jackman – Treasure; Kathy Bartolomeo – Secretary; Board Members: Kyle Hart, Susan McCutchen; Suzzie Schyler; Dan Woomer.

December 23, 2023 - SCMAGLEV Water Quality Certification (WQC) Review - The Maryland Department of the Environment has announced that they intend to deny BWRR's WQCMDE informed BWRR by letter dated December 22, 2023.  To view the letter, click here.

November 6, 2023 - Westport developer settles lawsuit with builder of high-speed maglev train.  Stonewall Capital and the Baltimore Washington Rapid Rail (BWRR) reached an agreement that allows both the planned mixed-use development of the 43-acre waterfront plot in Westport and the building of the SCMaglev maintenance facility and train yard. To see the full article by Melody Simmons – Senior Reporter, Baltimore Business Journal, click here.

August 15, 2023 - MCRT Summer 2023 Newsletter published.  Urgent Call for Water Quality Experts - - Big $$$ Behind Northeast Maglev’s Lobbying Influence - - Postponed: Jury Trial for Maglev-Westport Condemnation Lawsuit - - More TNEM “Blatant Subterfuge” - - MCRT at Community Events - - MCRT Speaks to Community Groups - - Baltimore’s Penn Station Gets $6m for Upgrades.  To read this edition click here.

April 13, 2023 - MCRT releases its 2022 Annual Report.  To review the report click here.

March 28, 2023 - Video Report: Amtrak's new Acela.  To see the Washington Post video click here.

September 20, 2022 - MCRT Joins Baltimore Westport Associations In Setting the Record Straight

In its September 8th press release, the South Baltimore 7 Coalition (SB7) falsely claimed to represent all its members as endorsing the SCMaglev train project. This inaccurate and misleading report emanated from the convening of a special board meeting by the SB7 chair to pressure community leaders to vote in favor of a letter supporting this transportation project. The vote was not unanimous, as only three members voted in favor, two voted no, and one abstained.
The Northeast Maglev (TNEM) announced SB7's claim in its September 15th e-mail marketing newsletter, thanking the SB7 communities for “throwing their collective weight behind the Northeast Maglev project,” further spreading misleading information. To read the TNEM newsletter announcement click here.
The Westport Neighborhood Association (WNA) and Westport Community Economic Development Corporation (Westport CEDC) are setting the record straight regarding the SB7. The MCRT joins the WNA and Westport CEDC in challenging the continued deceptive and unsupported claims made by Baltimore-Washington Rapid Rail to promote building the SCMaglev. To read the September 20th MCRT press release click here.

September 14, 2022 - MCRT Report Released - SCMaglev Proposed Use of Konterra Property

MCRT experts have prepared this report to ". . . provide the “Konterra” references contained within the SCMaglev DEIS documents and supplement each of the extracted sections in order to provide context and additional information for each topic. Some commentary is provided in this document to explain our interpretation of the references."  For a copy of this report, click here.

August 15, 2022 - FRA Responses to MCRT's FOIA Appeal

To read the FRA's response click here.

June 8, 2022 - MCRT's new SCMaglev Info handouts have arrived.


For the English version - click here.


For the Spanish version - click here.



MCRT has prepared and made a series of presentations on the negative impacts of building and operating the SCMaglev would bring to Maryland, and raise challenges to the promises and marketing message promotors of the SCMaglev have stated.  Here are a small sampling of these presentations. (click on the title to open)

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