Transportation could hurt Baltimore's chances with Amazon

It is great to read that Baltimore will be competing for the new Amazon headquarters (“Baltimore — and Maryland — to vie for second Amazon headquarters,” Sept. 7). Our city has the human talent, the space, the location and the need. Getting this project could be transformative for the city. The biggest drawback we have for creating those 50,000 new jobs is our public transportation system. Sorry, Gov. Larry Hogan, but the LINK bus system will not cut it for making Baltimore a world class city that can attract this kind of business. You should have let the Red Line get underway more than a year ago, if you were really concerned about “where jobs are needed most,” as The Sun reports you to have said.

However, that bad decision does not have to cripple the city’s application for Amazon HQ.

Port Covington and other sites are available. So, let’s get the Maryland Transit Authority to commit to dedicated bus lines to serve the Amazon HQ site, wherever it is inside the city or even outside its borders. We need to reach into struggling neighborhoods that have the workers (both for the proposed HQ and the current Amazon distribution center) and make their commute to work no more than 20-30 minutes, foolproof and safe. We need publicly-funded connectors like Johns Hopkins has for its east and west campuses. Mayor Catherine Pugh and Governor Hogan should put that into our application and show we are serious about this.

J. Stephen Cleghorn, Baltimore

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