2 officials working to get Bay Bridge walk restored

Annapolis alderman says cancellation hurts tourism

February 10, 2005|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

An Annapolis alderman and a Queen Anne's County commissioner plan to introduce resolutions requesting the Maryland Department of Transportation reverse its decision to cancel this year's Bay Bridge run and walk.

Alderman Josh Cohen, a Democrat who represents the Eastport section of Annapolis, and Queen Anne's County Commissioner Gene Ransom, a Democrat from Grasonville, expect to present their resolutions next week.

Last month, state transportation officials pointed to the high cost of security after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, as well as traffic backups caused by closing a span to vehicular traffic for the race, as reasons to skip the event this spring. Repairs to the westbound span of the 4.3-mile bridge - cracked concrete is requiring more than $7 million in repaving - also contributed to the decision.

Transportation officials are considering whether to offer the event, which has drawn tens of thousands of visitors, in future years. First held in 1975, the race was canceled in 2002 because of inclement weather and in 2003 because officials said it would have diverted resources from homeland security efforts.

Cohen, a past participant in the race, has a copy of the resolution on his Web site. It refers to the tourism that the event attracts and warns that canceling it might jeopardize interest in the tradition.

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