The idea of a train connecting DC to Baltimore in 15 minutes is a bit closer to becoming a reality.
After completing a federally-funded environmental study, the Maryland Department of Transportation and planners for a Superconducting Magnetic Levitation have three proposed routes for the journey between DC and Baltimore.
The main route that has been publicized would have a station in either the Mount Vernon Square/Chinatown area or near NoMA/Gallaudet Metro station, a stop at BWI Marshall Airport, and a final stop in either the Westport, Port Covington or Federal Hill/Inner Harbor neighborhoods. The tunnels for the routes could either run alongside the Baltimore-Washington Parkway or parallel a portion of Amtrak’s lines.
The project planners hope to have a route approved by mid-2019, paving the way for design and construction to begin later the same year. After completion, the line would eventually be extended northward to New York City.
Magnetic levitation trains operate using sets of superconducting magnets both along the bottom of the train and along the guideway to propel the train at higher speeds than possible by traditional railways. The idea of a super-fast Maglev train was floated back in 2011, when Amtrak President Joseph Boardman was hopeful a high-speed rail could be in place by 2040, which would among other things, reduce travel time between DC and New York City from 162 minutes to 96 minutes.