Residents, Businesses Fear Purple Line Will Force Them Out

Many residents and business owners in southern Maryland fear they will have to give up their homes and shops once the Purple Line is built due to increasing rent.

The 16-mile lightrail administered by the MTA would connect Bethesda with New Carrolton, also connecting with several Metro stations in the area. 

"This community supports the purple line because this is a very transit-dependent community. We have the highest ridership in the area," Zorayda Moreira-Smith with CASA de Maryland told News4, referencing the Bedford and Victoria Station Apartments in Hyattsville, Md.  "Even if you're not low-income, a 10 to 15 percent increase [in rent] will impact everything else."

Lakshman Nandwani has worked in the area for 30 years, but is anxious about the change the line could bring.

"Rates will be going up for everybody but not everybody will benefit from [the Purple Line]," Nandwani said.

The MTA is working with the Department of Economic Development to address their concerns. 

"We are poor people. If the rent goes up, the people will go away," Hyattsville resident Alicia Silba said.


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