County Announces Completion of RT355 Underpass Named for Silver Spring Resident

County officials and others on Friday announced the completion of an underpass under MD355/Rockville Pike that is now named after a long-time Silver Spring resident, Phil Alperson.

Alperson was an aide to then-U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen who then joined the county’s Department of Transportation. As the Military Installations/Base Realignment and Closure lead, he spearheaded the crossing project from conception and funding through early construction. Alperson died on May 14, 2020. His wife Jane Alperson and daughter Reva Alperson were part of the Friday ceremony.

The crossing for pedestrians and bicyclists connects the National Institutes of Health and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, and provides safer access to the Medical Metro station.

“MD355/Rockville Pike at the NIH and Walter Reed Metro station has been a dangerous intersection for generations, and the employees and visitors of these critical institutions deserved better, said County Executive Marc Elrich in a press release. “It is appropriate that this pedestrian underpass is going to be named after the late Phillip Richard Alperson, former Montgomery County government employee and key Capitol Hill aide, well-known for getting things done for his county and country.”     

“Phil was an eternal optimist with a purpose. He knew in his heart that our work in the Congress could help people in Maryland and across the country,” said Sen. Van Hollen, who also attended on Friday. “He believed that government had the ability to deliver meaningful results for our community and nation. He also rightly believed that we have an enduring obligation to provide world-class medical care to our men and women in uniform and to our veterans.”

Construction of the project took about five years and included new 120-foot-deep high-speed elevators, emergency stairs creating direct access between the station and the east side of MD 355, and a new elevator and staircase between the existing Metrorail platform and mezzanine level.

MCDOT graphic

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