ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A 16-mile light rail proposal between Bethesda and New Carrollton has received federal approval to move into a preliminary engineering phase.

Gov. Martin O’Malley announced the Federal Transit Administration approval for the next step for the Purple Line on Friday.

Approval means the project moves to preparation of more detailed plans, cost estimates and environmental studies.

The Purple Line is planned to link both branches of Metro’s Red Line at Bethesda and Silver Spring, the Green Line at College Park and the Orange Line at New Carrollton. It also would connect all three MARC commuter rail lines, Amtrak and local bus services.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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