China’s Maglev train prototype (seen here) can allegedly reach speeds of up to 327 miles per hour. The Baltimore Chapter of the National Action Network headed by Larry Young, the chapter’s chairman support a transportation project that would bring Maglev to America’s northeast corridor. (Coutesy photo)

By AFRO Staff

The National Action Network Greater Baltimore Chapter, Maryland’s largest affiliate of the leading civil rights organization, endorsed Northeast Maglev and the proposed Phase One of the SCMAGLEV train project (SCMaglev is derived from semi conductor magnetic levitation). The support is based on attracting significant employment and business opportunities to Maryland and addressing some of the transportation challenges along the Northeast Corridor of the United States. The chapter joins many grassroots, business and labor organizations backing Northeast Maglev, and will be one of the project’s community partners providing access to information about the route, facilities, jobs, local involvement, and other aspects.

“NAN Greater Baltimore Chapter promotes a modern civil rights agenda for all people including underrepresented and disenfranchised individuals wanting the types of benefits public transportation infrastructure projects can bring,” stated local chapter chairman Larry Young. “With concerns such as the cancellation of the Maryland MTA Red Line and our local economies struggling from the COVID-19 pandemic, collaboration is needed now more than ever to give residents a chance for a brighter future. Our chapter is determined to help Northeast Maglev make that happen,” he added.

Northeast Maglev is working to bring the Superconducting Maglev (SCMAGLEV) to the Northeast Corridor, beginning with a 15-minute route from Washington, D.C. to Baltimore City, with a stop at BWI Marshall Airport. Ultimately, an SCMAGLEV taking people from Washington, D.C. to New York City in one hour will help address the Corridor’s crippling congestion on highways, oppressive air quality, and outdated transportation systems. In Maryland, Phase One will bring many contract opportunities as it generates more than 74,000 construction related jobs and 1,500 permanent jobs for Maryland residents. It will be the largest upcoming civil works project in the region.

“We are honored to have the support of a respected partner like the National Action Network Greater Baltimore Chapter, and we will work together to help opportunities come to Baltimore and other areas,” noted Wayne L. Rogers, chairman and CEO of Northeast Maglev. “In particular, I consider our effort as fortunate to have Senator Larry Young with his organizing experience contributing to the insights that will guide us,” Rogers added.

The SCMAGLEV train is the world’s fastest passenger train that has been safely operating in Japan for more than a decade. The project’s first phase is currently under review by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) more than 30 federal, state and local agencies prepare an Environmental Impact Statement. The Environmental Impact Statement will determine the final route, and a Draft Environmental Impact Statement was published on January 15, 2021. Currently more than 70 percent of Phase One is being planned for a deep tunnel in an effort to ensure no homes will be taken. Northeast Maglev is working with organizations like National Action Network to engage members of local communities and maximize the benefits the project could bring to the region.

Young and the Chapter he leads want to be closely involved. “We always take a hard look at the issues that could impact our communities. After learning about the SCMAGLEV proposal, we are now driven to be an advocate for it. We see it as a big part of our local chapter’s future that will help adults searching for employment, students being inspired to enter STEM education and careers, highway travelers saving time, train passengers having a better experience, and so much more,” Young shared.

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