Historic Talbot Avenue Bridge in Silver Spring Reopens After Six-Year Closure

The historic Talbot Avenue bridge in Silver Spring has reopened for pedestrians and vehicles after being closed for six years due to construction work related to the upcoming Purple Line.

The new bridge, which marks a significant milestone for the Purple Line, restores the connection between the Silver Spring communities of Lyttonsville and North Woodside. Lifelong Lyttonsville resident and community leader Patricia Tyson had the honor of making the first ceremonial drive across the Talbot Avenue Bridge, symbolically breaking a purple ribbon.

The ADA-compliant Talbot Avenue bridge includes multi-layer safety fencing, an updated two-way road surface, a ramp, new curbs, and wider sidewalks. According to the Maryland Department of Transportation, the improvements are intended to enhance safety for both cars and pedestrians crossing the CSX train tracks and the parallel Purple Line tracks currently under construction below.

The Purple Line is a 21-station light rail line that will run from Bethesda to New Carrollton and connect riders to the Metro’s Red, Green, and Orange lines, MARC and Amtrak trains, and bus services. Construction of the Purple Line, which is more than 60 percent complete, began in 2017 and has been plagued by numerous delays and escalating costs; however, officials anticipate that the transit line will open in late 2027.

According to MoCo360, the original 100-year-old, one-lane wooden-and-steel Talbot Avenue bridge was once the link between segregated communities. African Americans lived on the Lyttonsville side, while North Woodside was primarily white. The bridge passed over the CSX and Metro tracks and, according to the Greater Lyttonsville Sector Plan (PDF), provided Lyttonsville residents with a connection to employment, shopping, and recreational opportunities in Silver Spring.

Montgomery Parks planners have proposed building a new park in Lyttonsville, which would function as a rest stop along the Capital Crescent Trail. The trail is expected to reopen between Silver Spring and Bethesda in spring 2026, a year earlier than originally planned.

The proposed park, which would showcase the history of the historically Black Lyttonsville community, would incorporate sections of the original Talbot Avenue Bridge. Initially scheduled for replacement, residents advocated for the bridge’s preservation due to its historical significance, according to MoCo360.

Montgomery County Photo

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