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The roadway is a four lane divided highway. Design elements include:

  • Two 12′ lanes in each direction
  • 4′ inside and 10′ outside shoulders in each direction
  • Intersections designed to eliminate through movements and left turns from side streets, driveways, and access roads. J-Turns, which require vehicles to make a right turn onto MD 404 and then a U-turn at a median crossover, to improve roadway safety.
  • Partial acceleration/deceleration lanes at major intersections
  • Linear swales and stormwater ponds to address water quality and quantity requirements
  • One bridge over Norwich Creek and multiple culverts and small structures
  • Improved safety and operations and reduction of traffic congestion caused by high seasonal peaks associated with summer resort traffic

Environmental Issues

As with all construction, protecting the environment is paramount. Along the MD 404 Corridor, wetlands and a federally endangered dwarf wedge mussel were top environmental preservation priorities. To protect the mussel, construction work did not occur within at least 25 ft of the Norwich Creek and no “in stream” work was allowed. Strong sediment control measures were critical to protecting the stream as well. The design included a longer span bridge to avoid any impacts to the mussel.

  • Right-of-way segments were required throughout the corridor.
  • Approximately 7.5 acres of wetlands, 4,500 linear feet of stream and 20 acres of forest were impacted. Off-site mitigation was planned.
  • Endangered dwarf wedge mussel is present in Norwich Creek. The new bridge spans Norwich Creek, and no work was performed within the creek to minimize impacts to the mussel.
  • The following utilities were present. Their relocations occurrred prior to the roadway construction: Choptank Electric, Delmarva Power, Verizon, Comcast and Maryland Broadband Cooperative.